Hope in a hopeless world

To God, Source of hope, gladly singing
– he promises, capably bringing
real hope for the hopeless, releasing
from fear – peace through all, never ceasing.

Believing his word of salvation
from sickness and sin’s condemnation,
believing that Jesus procured thus
by death this solution assured us.

We’ve joy from this hope that’s abounding,
though Satan sows doubts, but the grounding
of hope is secure in our Saviour,
his Spirit walks with us for ever.

Still troubled by illness and sinning –
we know that their end you are bringing,
enjoying your grace, contemplating,
bright future we’re patiently waiting.

Family Care

A happy home with honour, love,
will strengthen all who in it live,
obedience to wise Mum and Dad,
and neighbours for such peace are glad.

But it will not arise by chance,
by apathy or negligence,
nor from indulgence – being blind
to disobedience is not kind.

No heavy-handed, harsh regime,
but patient teaching, discipline
that’s firm, but loving, gains respect,
and from life’s pitfalls will protect.

And when we’ve failed, and faults confess,
there is such grace, he still can bless,
and help us wisely show we care,
and try, his love with others share.

And then in age, reversal comes –
care for the parents by the sons
and daughters, as the Lord commands,
let’s caring be, as he intends.

Tune: LM
“Honour your father and mother” — which is the first commandment with a promise —”that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth” Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead , bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord. Ephesians 6:2-4

Mission Impossible

Mission Impossible: go out –
eleven disciples poor, without
administration, scheme and strength
should take, throughout the breadth and length
of all the world, Christ’s words, good news –
though some would hate, falsely accuse,
detest the message. ‘Power I’ll send
to help you do what I intend –
my Holy Spirit will descend,
though to my Father I ascend.’

Men’s pride at Babel brought division,
disunity, folly, confusion.
By miracle, at Pentecost,
that unity that had been lost
began again – God’s wonders told
in every language, soon the world
would hear this gospel of his grace
now brought to all the human race –
not blasted out from megaphone –
minds wake and listen, new life known.

See this Man!

See the man whose words impressed,
see the one who all confessed
someone special, kind and good,
yet who showed you what you should
do, and so some took exception
felt no need of God’s redemption.

See the man who healed and fed
thousands from five loaves of bread,
but not willing yet to claim
forced submission to his reign,
giving time for all to ponder
who he is, this King of wonder.

See his followers, faltering, weak,
see them honour him and seek
help to stand when many slate them,
threaten, silence, murder, hate them
all because of proclamation
joyful of his free salvation.

The Point of Return

‘Go my own way, with money to spend …
Everyone’s friendly – I’ve plenty to lend …
exciting wild living, no time to be sad,
no work, and no duties, who’s to say that I’m bad …?

‘The money has gone, no pals’ helping hand,
I’m hungry, and famine’s besetting the land,
prices as rising – can I work for some food?’
“Yes, you can go feed my pigs!” ‘Oh, how I would
eat what they’ve got, I’m so starving still,
longing for something my stomach to fill …

‘My father has servants – they’ve food to spare.
I’ve wasted his money, no longer an heir,
but maybe he’d give me a better job there,
I’ll tell him I’m sorry – will he still for me care …?

The father when seeing him, ran to him, kissed –
Oh, how this prodigal child he had missed!
Gladly he welcomed his humble son home.’

‘My wandering, squandering nightmare is gone.’

cf. Luke 15:7-31

on Psalm 28

With hate in heart,
they speak of peace.
don’t care to ask
for mercy, grace.
But I do ask –
don’t close your ear –
I’ll share their fate
if you don’t hear.

But those with no
regard for what
God thinks, don’t want
these gifts he’s got.
My heart exults –
you’ve heard my call:
my Shepherd carries,
me through all.

Draw in, and save
a people who
will be your own,
and love you too.
Though hated, I’m
inseparable
from Fortress strong,
impregnable.

“Since they show no regard for the works of the LORD and what his hands have done, he will tear them down and never build them up again. Praise be to the LORD, for he has heard my cry for mercy. … my heart leaps for joy …be their shepherd and carry them for ever.” Psalm 28: 5-9

Tune:88 88

on Psalm 130

When desperate, to Jesus call,
for nothing else can help at all:
don’t want to quit, give up, so cry –
‘I need Your help if I’m to try
to persevere. I see no way
to overcome – and need to pray.

‘I don’t deserve good to receive;
mercy I ask – I know I grieve
You every day, and You alone
may pardon give, for sin atone.
We know one day You will come back,
all will be good, we’ll nothing lack.

‘I wait that dawn, and know Your love
will never fail, and leads above.
Your word gives hope, and there I place
my trust, and wait all promised grace.
My sins You have all wiped away,
my tears You will wipe clear one day.’

Tune: 88 88 88

Three Crosses at Calvary

One man on a cross insulted his neighbour
by mocking this sufferer who could be his Saviour
– he’d lived his own way though expecting provision –
his needs met by God while he lived in rebellion.

Another who’d lived in a similar manner
now turned and acknowledged and honoured the Saviour,
admitted his guilt and his fair condemnation
and asked for Christ’s mercy, eternal salvation.

Between them there hung on the cross one awaited
right from the beginning when all was created
so good, but the sinning had spoilt this creation
and all would have need of God’s pardon, redemption.

The one who was sorry, looked forward to glory,
received what Christ died for, that prime day of history,
the greatest achievement accomplished and won,
by Jesus, who’d rise, the Good Shepherd, God’s Son.

Is God alive?

You can’t believe there’s a God who is good?
complain he doesn’t do (yet) what you think he should?
assume that Jesus just can’t have been what
is generally believed – or you rather hope not?

You have no patience to carefully read,
and feel the accounts must surely indeed
be written to trick, deceive, confuse,
but dare not the history yourself peruse?

Did that man so die who was much admired?
Did he live again, and has since inspired
so many, did he teach well, heal?
and the will of the one true God reveal?

The World was Rocked

‘I can’t believe, I won’t believe
until I see and feel
that he is now alive again,
his resurrection real.’

He saw, and then he didn’t need
the hands and side to feel,
for this was Jesus, changed, and yet
with body, solid, real.

We cannot see and touch him now,
the sites of nail-holes feel,
but dare we therefore scorn, insist
their statements were unreal?

So many saw, faithfully told –
surprised, astonished, shocked
– they lost their fear and doubt, grew bold –
and all the world was rocked.
Tune: CM
“Touch me and see; a ghost does not have flesh and bones, as you see I have.” … They gave him a piece of broiled fish, and he took it and ate it in their presence.’ Luke 24: 42, 43; for Thomas’ reaction see John 20: 24 – 29