Captured for Freedom!

I’m bound to my Lord, so now I am free! –
I’m free of the hold, the old misery
of gripping temptations, sin’s harsh slavery:
a servant of Jesus has real liberty!

I’m free to delight in flowers and song,
enjoying Christ’s love, to whom I belong,
and free of frustration, greed, jealousy gone:
this pleasurable service in him has begun!

I’d thought myself free to live as I please
with no obvious crimes I’d enjoy life of ease,
but then I felt aimless, and empty, no peace –
I didn’t feel happy, and longed for release.

We’re all needing boundaries – just like a child,
and peace with the Father, to him reconciled,
and that brings empowerment to quit what’s defiled,
and in all life’s troubles, he’ll walk by my side!

Tune: 10 10 11 11 eg Houghton

Like Sheep

Wandering far for lusher grass,
sheep cannot give thought
to the bogs and pits they pass
where they could get caught.

Need a Shepherd to control,
where they drift and roam,
and we too can vaguely stroll
where temptations come.

With compassion, Jesus saw
the harassed crowd in need.
Shepherd wise with truth to help
safely lead and feed.

When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. Matthew 9:36,37
Tune:75 75

Safe Space

Perfect safety at the side
of our God, if you’ll abide
in that blessed place, no pride –
space for all from fears to hide.

Safe because his ‘eyes’ see all,
safe because he hears my call,
an impregnably strong wall
keeps sheep safe from lion’s maul.

Buffeted but not destroyed,
in our Maker’s work employed,
guided, follies to avoid,
such encouragement enjoyed.

As you struggle in this place,
know his constant firm embrace,
drink supplies – sufficient grace
’till reach danger-free ‘home-base’.

Tune: 77 77

A Personal BC to AD

BC: My life Before I met with Jesus Christ,
Before Conversion to his praise and ways –
ephemeral, elusive happiness,
for emptiness, frustrations filled those days.

And then I heard his words and understood,
I saw his beauty, heard appealing grace.
Amazed, I knew he would accept, forgive
– ran to regenerating warm embrace.

AD: Now After Death of who I was – my old
self died with him, I have a Helper near;
so After this Deliverance I walk
with him. To all, as King he’ll soon appear.

Finding the Real Christ

If your fears, frustrations fester
lift your heart to prayer for faith
– not a mindless, empty ritual –
finding One who rules the earth.

Read about his interventions –
speaking, coming as a man,
teaching of his real dominion,
who this universe began.

Come in prayer for he invites you,
but come humbly, honestly,
and prepared to turn from what he
shows is wrong, repentantly.

Would you really go on claiming
all you see is meaningless?
and ignore the Christ amazing
who spoke hope and righteousness?

Tune: 87 87 trochaic eg Sussex, tune of ‘May the grace of Christ our Saviour’

Whatever the mess

John 4: 1-42

Relationships many – her life was a mess,
found Jesus knew all and seemed willing to bless –
returned to the town to tell people this must
be surely Messiah, the Saviour to trust.

They went out to find him, to meet him and hear
his teaching and knowledge – and soon it was clear
that Jesus was Saviour: Samaritans, Jews
and Gentiles – for all he’d astounding good news!
Tune: 11 11 11 11

Reconciled, then fostering peace

So vast the chasm, huge the rift
between pure goodness, love, and they
who on his earth carelessly drift
and no respect or rental pay.

He gave them much, and often spared
though few gave thought to make request;
their folly grieved him, for he cared
and knew their loss, they lacked the best.

What could he do? the rift was great.
Could they be healed and reconciled,
brought into such a holy state
that each could be his friend, his child?

He spoke, he came, he took their place
to pay the price for all their sin;
his Spirit moved their hearts in grace
to humbly turn, return to him.

And those who did, shunned squabbling
and malice, selfishness and greed,
all hatred, and proud babbling:
to foster peace they’d now been freed!
Tune: LM

Giving is so much nicer than stealing!

Flimsy pleasure – hacking, scamming –
what a waste of mind and skill –
misappropriating talents
given by God to do his will.

Grabbing, greedy, stealing, wasting
other people’s things and time
– til a change to gladly giving
wrought by glorious power divine.

Tune: 87 87 eg Mariners, Traditional Sicilian melody

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’)