February 22, 2018

Great Is Thy Faithfulness (Redux)

psalmshymnsspiritualsongskjv

Redux means to revisit, bring back, re-release. This last week of 2014, we—the bloggers here at Girlfriends Coffee Hour—are each ‘revisiting’ a blog we wrote earlier this year. We would love to share with you just a bit about how very good God has been to us! He has given us all so much grace and mercy, blessings and provision, protection and guidance! He has led us and taught us through His Holy Spirit so many incredible things! He has molded, and chastised, and encouraged us to be daughters with humble hearts who are dependent upon Him. And He has helped us to be strong, committed, and faithful women who love Him and desire to bring Him much honor and glory and majesty. We pray that our words would encourage you also…and draw You deeper into relationship with the One Who loves you so!  I know you will be encouraged by my dear friend Clella’s words.

When You Pass Through the Waters…

Have you ever walked upstream in a river and felt the current pushing against you, or have you walked into a big wave at the ocean and had it knock you down and try to pull you under?  When I look back on this past twelve months, I recall many events that felt just like that.  Perhaps you have, too?

When you go through deep waters,
I will be with you.
When you go through rivers of difficulty,
you will not drown.
When you walk through the fire of oppression,
you will not be burned up;
the flames will not consume you.
Isaiah 43:2

These verses assure me/us that we will NOT drown, we will NOT be consumed. The reason is found in the verses which surround verse 2:

But now, O Jacob, listen to the Lord who created you.
O Israel, the One who formed you says,
“Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you.
I have called you by name; you are Mine…
because you are precious to Me.
You are honored, and I love you.
Do not be afraid, for I am with you.
I will gather you and your children from east and west.
I will say to the north and south,
‘Bring My sons and daughters back to Israel
from the distant corners of the earth.
Bring all who claim Me as their God,
for I have made them for My glory.
It was I who created them.’”
Isaiah 43:1, 4-7

In spite of the cancers, the surgeries, the deaths, the financial hardships, and other trials in the lives of my friends, family, and myself, we did NOT drown. These things were hard and tested our faith, but because we know the love and faithfulness of our Creator and Lord, we trusted Him to bring us through each trial and He did.

So when I looked back at the songs I had written about this year, this song, Great is Thy Faithfulness, still stands out as my favorite.  God is faithful every day and in every way.  “There is NO shadow of turning with Thee!”

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Great is Thy faithfulness, O God my Father;
There is no shadow of turning with Thee,
Thou changest not, Thy compassions they fail not,
As Thou hast been, Thou forever wilt be.

Great is Thy faithfulness!
Great is Thy faithfulness!
Morning by morning new mercies I see
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided
Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me!

Summer and winter and springtime and harvest,
Sun, moon, and stars in their courses above;
Join with all nature in manifold witness,
To Thy great faithfulness, mercy, and love.

Pardon for sin and a peace that endureth,
Thine own great Presence to cheer and to guide;
Strength for today, and bright hope for tomorrow
Blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside.

Written by Thomas O. Chisholm / Music by Rev. William H. Runyan

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Whether I’m in the valley…in dark shadows, or on the mountaintop, this song reminds me that I can ALWAYS trust God.  It is so full of truth, promise, and encouragement.

So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.
Isaiah 41:10

Every morning that I awake, I can say “Great is Your faithfulness, Your mercies are new, and You will provide all I will ever need.” God is the same yesterday, today, and forever.  He doesn’t change, and neither does His compassion.

The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;
His mercies never come to an end;
they are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness.
Lamentations 3:22-23

Even in the moments when I don’t sense His presence, I know He keeps His promises to bless, and give us strength and peace. He is faithful to His Word and loving to His children.

The Lord gives strength to His people; the Lord blesses His people with peace.
Psalm 29:11

Surely You have granted him unending blessings
and made him glad with the joy of Your presence.
Psalm 21:6

God is faithfulness
He is merciful
He does provide
He is full of love
He does forgive
He gives peace
He is ever-present
He is our Strength
He is our Hope
surely His blessings are all mine/are all yours!  
Praise the Lord!

Let everything that has breath, praise the Lord.  Praise the Lord.
Psalm 150:6

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Dear Lord God, we come to You at the end of 2014 and the beginning of 2015, with grateful hearts.  Through all the trials and tribulations of this past year, You have been faithful.  Because Your faithfulness doesn’t change we are assured that You will faithfully be with us when new trials come our way.  You do NOT change, Your compassions do NOT fail.  There is NO shadow of turning with You.  Great is Your FAITHFULNESS to each of us, Your children, morning by morning!  “Thank You” can’t really express the gratitude that wells up in our hearts, but You know our hearts so—“Thank You, Lord, we love You.”  In Jesus’ Precious Name, Amen.

Jesus Loves Me

psalmshymnsspiritualsongskjv

I was lost
I was in chains
The world had a hold of me

My heart was a stone
I was covered in shame
When He came for me

I couldn’t run, couldn’t run from His presence
I couldn’t run, couldn’t run from His arms

Jesus, He loves me, He loves me, He is for me
Jesus, how can it be, He loves me, He is for me

And it was a fire
Deep in my soul
I’ll never be the same

I stepped out of the dark
And into the light
When He called my name

I couldn’t run, couldn’t run from His presence
I couldn’t run, couldn’t run from His arms

He holds the stars and He holds my heart
With healing hands that bear the scars
The rugged cross where He died for me
My only hope, my everything

Singer/Songwriter: Chris Tomlin along with Reuben Morgan, Ben Glover

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Look up into the heavens.
Who created all the stars?
He brings them out like an army, one after another, calling each by it’s name.
Because of His great power and incomparable strength, not a single one is missing.
Isaiah 40:26

Don’t you love reading such amazing verses about our Creator?  I know I do.  And you have to think—if He cares that much for the stars and their names—how much more does He love and care about you?  As you listen to this song, I want you to just sit and soak in all His love for you.  Try to name all the ways He has shown you this past week and write them in a notebook.  The Creator of this world is totally in love with you!

There is nothing that you can do to make Him love you any more or any less than He already does.  He even sent Jesus His Son to this earth, to go before us and to suffer and die for us.  He allowed His only Son to go through a lot of hard on this earth, to experience the loss and suffering, the hurts and trials that we would go through after Him.  He paved the way for us.  He wants the best things for you.  He doesn’t want you to settle on a life where you are striving and trudging along to the next event. He wants you to have an abundant life—full of Him and full of joy!

This world can get a hold on you if you aren’t intentional about living for Jesus. Romans 12:2 says,”Do not be conformed to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—His good,pleasing and perfect will.”  It would be so easy to throw in the towel and just live like the rest of the world.  How many hard things are we allowed to go through in order to bring Him glory?

Is this you today?  Have you been in a valley for so long that you forgot what a mountain looks like?  I want to tell you that He sees you and He has not forgotten you. Whether you need freedom from a stronghold or you need financial provision…. Whether or you are waiting on God to heal a loved one or yourself, have courage and faith!  He has overcome this world!

I have told you these things, so that you may have peace in Me.
Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows.
But take heart, because I have overcome the world.
John 16:22

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Let us pray:  Dear God, You are almighty and trustworthy.  You love us so much and You give us grace and mercy so freely.  You are our Stronghold and our Portion forever.  We praise Your Name.  Thank You for sending Jesus to die in our place.  We have a place to lay all our sorrows and troubles…at the foot of the Cross.  Lord, I pray for all who need You today and don’t know You.  Or maybe they have just moved away.  Help us, Your people, to be the light and the hope that they need to come to You.   We love You.  In Jesus’ name, amen.

Great Is Thy Faithfulness

psalmshymnsspiritualsongskjv

Great is Thy faithfulness, O God my Father;
There is no shadow of turning with Thee,
Thou changest not, Thy compassions they fail not,
As Thou hast been, Thou forever wilt be.

Great is Thy faithfulness!
Great is Thy faithfulness!
Morning by morning new mercies I see
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided
Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me!

Summer and winter and springtime and harvest,
Sun, moon, and stars in their courses above;
Join with all nature in manifold witness,
To Thy great faithfulness, mercy, and love.

Pardon for sin and a peace that endureth,
Thine own great Presence to cheer and to guide;
Strength for today, and bright hope for tomorrow
Blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside.

~  Sing this song with me as our prayer and worship today.  ~

Written by Thomas O. Chisholm / Music by Rev. William H. Runyan

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Other than “Jesus Loves Me” this is surely my favorite song.  I have sung it since my earliest memory, and I never get tired of it.  Whether I’m in the valley…in dark shadows, or on the mountaintop, this song reminds me that I can ALWAYS trust God.  It is so full of truth, promise, and encouragement.

So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.
Isaiah 41:10

Every morning that I awake, I can say “Great is Your faithfulness, Your mercies are new, and You will provide all I will ever need.” God is the same yesterday, today, and forever. He doesn’t change, and neither does His compassion.

The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;
His mercies never come to an end;
they are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness.
Lamentations 3:22-23

I love all of nature (yes, even this crazy cold winter) so I join with all nature in praise to God’s great faithfulness.

For you shall go out in joy and be led forth in peace;
the mountains and the hills before you shall break forth into singing,
and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.
Isaiah 55:12

I have been pardoned from sin and have His peace.  I sense His presence, strength, and hope.

The Lord gives strength to His people; the Lord blesses His people with peace.
Psalm 29:11

God’s blessings are mine—are yours—because He is faithful to His Word and loving to His children.

Surely You have granted him unending blessings
and made him glad with the joy of Your presence.
Psalm 21:6

God is faithful, He is merciful, He does provide, He is full of love, He does forgive, He gives peace, He is ever-present, He is our strength, He is our hope, surely His blessings are all mine/are all yours!  Praise the Lord!

Let everything that has breath, praise the Lord. Praise the Lord.
Psalm 150:6