Hymn Devotions Day 21 – Footsteps of Jesus

DAY 21 – FOOTSTEPS OF JESUS

We never know what following Jesus will mean. Our lives are on this grand adventure that is never boring, always challenging, and seldom shown to us in advance.

Sometimes we are called to bring the gospel to those we never thought of earlier in life. Sometimes we are given a ministry of mercy, and we find ourselves helping people in ways we never dreamed of. I know that in my own life I have been able to minister in China and Malaysia, places that a boy born in Florida never thought of being able to go to.

Whether He calls us to a famous ministry speaking at the world’s largest churches or to meet the needs of the poor in third-world countries, the reward is the same. It was once said that

“If two angels were to receive at the same moment a commission from God, one to go down and rule earth’s grandest empire, the other to go and sweep the streets of its meanest village, it would be a matter of entire indifference to each which service fell to his lot, a post of ruler or the post of scavenger; for the joy of the angel lies only in obedience to God’s will”[1]

My prayer is that I would serve in the same manner, simply being grateful for an opportunity to serve the God I love.

Lord, help me to follow where You lead. Help me keep my eyes on You. Thank you for using me, for giving me a purpose, for enabling me to share in Your grace work. Amen.

  

FOOTSTEPS OF JESUS – Mary B.C. Slade

 

Sweetly, Lord, we have heard Thee calling

“Come, follow Me”

And we see where Thy footprints falling

Lead us to Thee

 

Though they lead o’er the cold, dark mountains

Seeking His sheep

Or along by Siloam’s fountains

Helping the weak

 

If they lead through the Temple holy

Preaching the word

Or in homes of the poor and lowly

Serving the Lord

 

Then at last when on high He sees us

Our journey done

We will rest where the steps of Jesus

End at His throne

 

REFRAIN:

 

Footprints of Jesus

That make the pathway glow

We will follow the steps of Jesus

Wherever they go


[1] John Newton

Hymn Devotions Day 8 – Be Thou My Vision

DAY 8 – BE THOU MY VISION

 

A melodious tune does nothing to soften the impact of the words of this hymn. I cannot honestly say that I don’t heed riches or the praise of man as the hymn writer pens.

Each time I think that I am making progress in those areas, something happens that makes me realize they have far more of a hold on me than I imagined. For every step forward in these areas, I seem to slip back into bad practices and habits far too often.

I pray that like David, in Psalm 46, that God would grant to me an undivided heart. I understand all too well that while I love God, I also still love the things of this world way too much. I understand what Paul was struggling with when he talked about doing things he knew were wrong and not doing the things he knew was right. Only God can help us become a consistent Christian through the power of His Spirit.

If I could capture the vision of God so clearly that His light would outshine everything else, it would help me to lead a life pleasing to Him. I can capture this vision by spending more and more time in His presence. My prayer is to see Him more clearly each day.

What a joy it would be to have a single-minded devotion to our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Lord, please become my vision. Help me to see you clearly in this muddled world. Grant to me an undivided heart so I may serve you with all of it. 

 

Be Thou My Vision by Mary Byrne

Be Thou my vision, O Lord of my heart

Naught be all else to me save that Thou art

Thou my best thought by day or by night

Waking or sleeping, Thy presence my light

Be Thou my wisdom and Thou my true Word

I ever with Thee and Thou with me Lord

Thou my great Father, I thy true son

Thou in me dwelling and I with Thee one

Riches I heed not nor man’s empty praise

Thou mine inheritance now and always

Thou and Thou only, first in my heart

High King of Heaven, my treasure Thou art

High King of Heaven my victory won

May I reach heaven’s joys, bright heaven’s Sun

Head of my own heart, whatever befall

Still be my vision, O Ruler of all

Hymn Devotions Day 6 – I Am Resolved

DAY 6 – I AM RESOLVED

 

This upbeat, quick-tempo hymn inspires and challenges me to live for Christ daily. All too often I find myself being charmed by the delights of this world. Like Abram’s nephew Lot, looking at the lush valley towards Sodom, I find myself dazzled by the shiny façade of material things.

Oh, how I long to discipline myself to pursue those things which are higher and nobler, godly things that deserve my single-minded devotion. The author of the song, Palmer Hartsough, makes a great observation that “friends may oppose me, foes may beset me.” Not only will Satan try to distract me from my resolve to follow Jesus but even Christian friends, who have succumbed to worldly temptations, will also oppose me. Radical, fanatic and other appellations will be hurled at the one who pursues hard after God.

Still, even though friends may not understand my desire, I want them to join with me. This hymn urges me to invite them on the journey into complete discipleship. By leaning on and learning from God’s Word, by seeking guidance from His Spirit in prayer, we can journey together in spiritual growth.

How resolved are you to let go of the things of this world and follow after Jesus?

 

Lord, give me the discipline to instill Christ-like habits in my life. Help me to look beyond the things of this world and pursue hard after those things which will make me be an asset to Your kingdom. Fill my eyes with glimpses of You.

 

I AM RESOLVED by Palmer Hartsough

 

I am resolved no longer to linger

Charmed by the world’s delights

Things that are higher, things that are nobler

These have allured my sight

 

I am resolved to go to the Savior

Leaving my sin and strife

He is the True One, He is the Just One

He hath the words of life

 

I am resolved to follow the Savior

Faithful and true each day

Heed what He sayeth, do what He willeth

He is the living way

 

I am resolved to enter the Kingdom

Leaving the paths of sin

Friends may oppose me, foes may beset me

Still will I enter in

 

I am resolved and who will go with me?

Come, friends, without delay

Taught by the Bible, led by the Spirit

We’ll walk the heavenly way

 

REFRAIN

 

I will hasten to Him, hasten so glad and free

Jesus, greatest, highest, I will come to thee

Hymn Devotions Day 3 – O Worship The King

DAY 3 O WORSHIP THE KING 

This majestic song lifts you up in praise to the One seated on the Everlasting throne. The use of adjectives such as shield, defender, friend, maker and redeemer tell us of God’s character.

Here is no aloof God, watching from way off in space. Here is a God intimately involved with His creation. This is, make no mistake, a hymn about the Creator and His creation. It was based on Psalm 104. In a day where evolution is held to be absolute truth, this hymn helps us to unashamedly sing out our belief in a personal Creator God.

The third stanza unapologetically states that God formed the world. The writer has in mind both the Genesis account of Moses and the book of Job, where God tells Job that He put boundaries on the waters.

God’s love and providence for His creation is evident throughout the song. It is because He cares and desires so deeply for us to have a relationship with Him, that we are able to sing of His glory and might.

God is our shield, an ever-present help in times of trouble. He defends us against the slanderous attacks of our adversary. He is our friend as well as our Lord, a mind-blowing concept is ever there was one. Most of all, He is our creator and our redeemer. He made us for Himself and redeemed us for Himself. All praise to the King of Kings, who is worthy of all glory and honor.

As you pray today, thank God for the ways He manifests Himself to you – a shield, defender, redeemer. He is not only your maker, but He will be your friend if you would yield your life to Him.

 

Thank you Lord, for creating us and the beautiful world we live in. We worship You, King of the Universe, and give you all glory and honor and praise.

 

O WORSHIP THE KING by Robert Grant

O worship the King, all glorious above

O gratefully sing God’s power and God’s love

Our Shield and Defender, the Ancient of Days

Pavilioned in splendor and girded with praise

O tell of His might, O sing of His grace

Whose robe is the light, whose canopy space

Whose chariots of wrath the deep thunderclouds form

      And dark is His path on the wings of the storm

      The earth with its store of wonders untold

      Almighty Thou power hath founded of old

      Hath established it fast by a changeless decree

      And round it has cast like a mantle, the sea

      Thy bountiful care, what tongue can recite

      It breathes in the air, it shines in the light

      It streams from the hills, it descends to the plains

      And sweetly distills in the dew and the rain

      Frail children of dust and feeble as frail

      In Thee do we trust, nor find Thee to fail

      Thy mercies, how tender, how firm to the end

      Our Maker, Defender, Redeemer and Friend

Hymn Devotions Day 1 – Stand Up, Stand Up for Jesus

Day 1

STAND UP, STAND UP FOR JESUS

When I was a child, I did not understand this hymn. Well, to be honest, I understood all but one line of it. In the fourth stanza, at the end, the poem goes, “where duty calls or danger, be never wanting there.”

In my young mind I took this phrase to mean “never be wanting to go wherever danger might be.” I knew, though, that while this made sense to my child’s mind, it didn’t make sense in a song about fighting for God, and being willing to put all on the line for the Lord.

Finally, it was explained to me. To be found wanting is to be found missing from where one needs to be. You are wanted, needed somewhere. You need to be somewhere that duty is calling, but you have gone AWOL. You have gone astray. The writer of this song is encouraging us to always be where we are needed, and to never let cowardice keep us from standing up for the Lord.

What a powerful song. Based on Ephesians 6:14 and written as a tribute to the Reverend Dudley Tyng (one of America’s great preachers) this song has inspired many to look to Jesus and not at the world. It is Jesus alone we look to, Jesus alone we are called to serve. Let us, therefore, be found true and faithful to the One who gave His life for us. Let us stand up for Jesus at home, school and play. Let us never be found wanting where we are needed.

Lord, help me be unashamed of You. Help me to witness clearly, speak boldly and oppose evil mightily. Give to me, the strength and protection I need.  

Stand Up, Stand for Jesus by George Duffield, Jr.

Stand up, stand up for Jesus   Ye soldiers of the cross

Lift high His royal banner                   It must not suffer loss

From victory, unto victory                 His army shall He lead

Till every foe is vanquished     And Christ is Lord indeed

 

Stand up, stand up for Jesus   The solemn watchword hear

If while ye sleep He suffers     Away with shame and fear

Wherever ye meet with evil     Within you or without

Charge for the God of battles            And put the foe to rout

 

Stand up, stand up for Jesus   The trumpet call obey

Forth to the mighty conflict    In this His glorious day

Ye that are brave now serve Him        Against unnumbered foes

Let courage rise with danger   And strength to strength oppose

 

Stand up, stand up for Jesus   Stand in His strength alone

The arm of flesh will fail you  Ye dare not trust your own

Put on the Gospel armor                   Each piece put on with prayer

Where duty calls or danger                 Be never wanting there

 

Stand up, stand up for Jesus   Each soldier to his post

Close up the broken column  And shout through all the host

Make good the loss so heavy  In those that shall remain

And praise to all around you  That death itself is gain

 

Stand up, stand up for Jesus   The strife will not be long

This day the noise of battle     The next the victor’s song

To him who overcometh                   A crown of life shall be

They with the King of Glory  Shall reign eternally