Peace as far as possible

Seek peace with all, but not with sin
or evil conversation;
respect and friendship try to win,
but don’t condone corruption.

Seek holiness in all your life
or God you will be grieving:
avoid censoriousness and strife –
be courteous, none deceiving.

Be resolute for right, but meek –
without his aid you’ll fail him,
but with his help, though frail and weak,
good will succeed, prevailing.

Christ died upon the cross to pay
our debts for all our failures,
now our delight is in his Way,
he mends our flawed behaviours.

“Make every effort to live in peace with all men and to be holy; without holiness no-one will see the Lord”. Hebrews 12:14
Tune: 87 87 iambic eg Dominuw Regit me (tune of ‘The King of love my Shepherd is’)

Angry but not praying

They wail in anger, misery,
‘God is unjust’, they say,’
‘He does not help, or care for me’,
and yet, they do not pray.

They’ve strayed aside, not turned to him,
their hearts are far away,
have no concern to leave their sin,
self-centred every day.

Trust many things – they flit and fly,
just like a wandering dove,
on various things they lean, rely,
won’t come to God for love.

“Return, return!” ‘Forgive, Receive
us, we’ll no longer trust
the crumbling helps that fail and grieve –
in grace we’ll be so blest.’
Tune: CM
(cf Hosea 7:11-14; 14:1-4)

Will you also leave Me?

To whom to go if leaving You?
who else to know, who else can do
the needed things to wipe away
our guilt and sins so that we may
have God as Friend and Father wise
to love, defend, and wipe our eyes.

They came to see You feed and heal.
You came to be our Saviour real.
They want a King to free the land,
and do their ‘thing’ and make them grand:
not keen to hear rebukes to guide,
Your truth so clear, serve at Your side.

“You do not want to leave too, do you?” Jesus asked the twelve. Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. We believe and know that you are the Holy One of God.” John 6:67-69

Tune 88 88 88 eg Melita (tune of ‘Eternal Father strong to save’ or Motzart (Isaac) (tune of ‘We have not known Thee as we ought’) or ‘Solid rock’ (tune of ‘My hope is built on nothing less’

Dressed for the King!

Adverts suggest that we never could be
happy without some new gadget we see,
kitchen transformed, or a new swell settee:
thrilling, exciting us briefly, maybe.

Day after day we enjoy tasty food,
pleasure in countryside, friends do us good.
Yes, there are troubles, but still much to cheer –
life in God’s world is not grey or austere.

Perfect the joy in God’s fellowship sweet,
dressed for His presence, protection complete,
beauty adorning, accepted, embraced –
in Jesus’ righteousness fully encased.

I will greatly rejoice in the Lord; my soul shall exult in my God, for he has clothed me with the garments of salvation, he has covered me with the robe of righteousness. Isaiah 61:10

Tune: 10 10 10 10 eg Slane (tune of ‘Be thou my vision’)

One in Seven

The factories would close
on Saturday –
and so no smoke arose
on Sunday,
the furnaces shut down,
the atmosphere cleared,
and they could see that far-off tower
on Sunday,
’til Monday.

Today,
as smuts and smoke,
our ears surround
all week,
which clog and choke
our thoughts,
cloud vision,
perception,
a day of rest and worship
can still provide
that opportunity
for mist and murk
to clear, subside
from mind and soul,
and we can view afresh
our aims and far-off goal.

Receive Jesus

A merry-go-round of monotony,
a chorus of cackling cacophony
– soul’s bellies a-rumbling,
and hungering, grumbling
– life colourless: strife, gloom and acrimony.

The gift that arrived that first Christmas
with promises that it could give us
what really can satisfy
– see God above ratify
– imperishable gift that’s so precious.

Amusements can give us a “sugar-rush”
– our souls need whole food that will nourish us.
We need to receive Him,
completely imbibing
His Word to escape this world’s death-curse.