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Monday, June 29, 2015

Language: Word Ambassadors: Prayers and Poetry


Reading: Acts 2:6

“And at this sound the crowd gathered and was bewildered, because each one heard them speaking in the native language of each.”

In a foreign city, in a crowded area, someone calls to you in your own language.

So personal. So immediately attracting.

Stand up on tiptoe to see—to hear—to answer.

Illusion or invitation? Voices swirl.


“My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; and I give eternal life to them, and they shall never perish; and no one shall snatch them out of My hand.”


Language of words.

Language of heart.

Language of relationship.

Language of purpose.

Language of worship.


Lord, please prepare our hearts, our souls, our minds, and our bodies, to hear and receive Your words within us. May we recognize Your voice whenever You speak and follow immediately in trust and obedience. Give us courage to separate from the crowd to follow You.


Psalm of Worship: Genesis 1:6

“And God said, ‘Let there be a dome in the midst of the waters, and let it separate the waters from the waters.’”



Friday, June 26, 2015

Devout: Word Ambassadors: Prayers and Poetry



Devout


From every nation

under heaven

echoes from words

given to Abraham

before the Law to

a man with devout

heart ready to receive

words of new beginnings

seeds to spread

throughout all peoples

now here represented

each one in Jerusalem

on day of holy fire.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Reflection: Hearts: Word Ambassadors: Prayers and Poetry




Reflection Questions


1.     How do you define a devout heart?

2.     Have you ever felt God’s fire ignite your heart?

3.     Do you hunger for that experience? Do you think it looks the same for everyone? Why or why not?

4.     What obstacles do we set up in our religion that can create a barricade against a living, breathing, devout faith


Share: How did you define a devout heart?

Monday, June 22, 2015

Hearts: Word Ambassadors: Prayers and Poetry


Reading: Acts 2:5

“Now there were devout Jews from every nation under heaven living in Jerusalem.”

In this center of Christ’s circle—the center of His sacrificial grace—all people from all nations under heaven were represented by at least one person.  Did they remember God’s promise to Abraham, “And in you all the families of the earth will be blessed.”

All devout. Ready to receive God’s truth? Ready to receive as did Abraham, “By faith Abraham, when he was called, obeyed by going out to a place which he was to receive for an inheritance; and he went out, not knowing where he was going.” Willing to be heart bound rather than rule bound? An act of faith rather than a commitment to religion.

Jesus had told His listeners after giving them the Beatitudes that He did not come to abolish the Law or the Prophets but to fulfill them. Yet His way did not look like the structure or edicts the faithful had followed.

Yet still Holy. Holy flames. His light. His fire descending. His words of hope and faith and love.  Staggering.

Lord, please keep our hearts devout in You so that we do not miss Your words or fire in our days.


Psalm of Worship: Genesis 1:5

“God called the light Day and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day.”


Friday, June 12, 2015

Gifted: Word Ambassadors: Prayers and Poetry



Gifted


Sudden messengers

gifted by the Spirit

speaking languages

given to each person

startling themselves as well,

granted work of angels

streams of living words

graciously poured out

saturating listeners.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Reflection: Speak: Word Ambassadors: Prayers and Poetry



Reflection Questions


1.     What are some ways that we can share His words without verbal language?

2.     How can we speak scripture words with love and not condemnation?

3.     Do you think if the special anointing left the followers after that day they continued to share the gospel with enthusiasm? Why or why not?

4.     What are some ordinary ways, or talents, we can ‘speak’ truth when we are available to the Holy Spirit’s use of us.

5.     What gift ability have you been given to speak the Lord’s words?


Share: Have you ever been startled by the Lord’s use of you for another?


Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Speak: Word Ambassadors: Prayers and Poetry


Reading: Acts 2:4

“All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages, as the spirit gave them ability.”

All of them—not one was left out.

Other languages—words not known to them before.

As the Spirit gave—a special gifting ability—not of their own making.

Out of hearts filled with prayer and humility waiting—in the Lord’s presence.

Given a task—an ability—a specific work to do that day.

Scripture does not say whether those abilities remained. Whether or not each person now had that particular speech gift to minister and evangelize that language culture after that day. But on that day they all became ambassadors of the Lord.

Lord, please help us to remember to seek Your Spirit daily so that in all our tasks we are available, if or whenever You so choose, to give even a moment—a word. May we not ignore the tasks You give even if they confuse or startle us. Help us to become Your ambassadors whether in silence or in speech. May we live so that Your light pours through us.


Psalm of Worship: Genesis 1:4

“And God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness.”

Friday, June 5, 2015

Flames: Word Ambassadors: Prayers and Poetry



Flames


Flames that did not burn

tongues like fire

falling on each person present

touch of prayer

fulfilled as promised

trembling with amazement

fearful or frozen

trusting in His presence

faith holding on

to become a blessing

flowing Spirit lights.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Reflection: Fire: Word Ambassadors: Prayers and Poetry



Reflection Questions


1.     Do you long for the ‘flames’ of the Spirit to pour down on you or do you hesitate?

2.     How much does sin or guilt or fear keep you from trusting God’s power in your life?

3.     Of what—of whom do we as a body become afraid and allow to keep us from His power of forgiveness?

4.     Like Isaiah, have you been willing to be sent by the Lord?  No matter how small or large a situation?


Share: How has His fire given you courage to act and be a blessing for someone?

Monday, June 1, 2015

Fire: Word Ambassadors: Prayers and Poetry


Reading: Acts 2:3

“Divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them, and a tongue rested on each of them.”

Flames falling down upon them that did not burn.  Did they think of Moses at the burning bush or were they too frozen in astonishment to process any thoughts?

Feelings, though, we might guess could include shock—amazement—fear—trembling—questions.  Like we do when God suddenly answers a prayer for us or steps in as Protector—Provider—Healer—Lord—Savior.

Don’t we sometimes pray and wait in trust—in faith—and yet are still stunned when the answer comes? Humbled?

Do we recognize holy fear as Isaiah did and realize the extent of our sin? An angel brought a burning coal to the prophet to forgive him. A burning coal from the heavenly altar that he had to carry by tongs—not touch.

“The people who were sitting in darkness saw a great light, and to those who were sitting in the land and shadow of death, upon them a light dawned.” Matt 4:16

Jesus spoke these words at the beginning of His ministry and then said, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”

Lord, help us to not become complacent or hesitant as believers, but strengthen us to daily walk in the power of Your fire and live Your words of hope. To be willing to answer Your call.


Psalm of Worship: Genesis 1:3

“Then God said, ‘Let there be light;’ and there was light.”
 
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