Pray for PRAISE

J.I. Packer offers  Horatius Bonar’s prayer for praise in his book Rediscovering Holiness. Peek below for thoughtful adoration.

Fill thou my life, O lord my God,
In every part with praise,
That my whole being may proclaim
Thy being and thy ways.

Not for the lip of praise alone,
Nor e’en the praising heart,
I ask, but for a life made up
Of praise in every part;

Praise in the common things of life,
Its goings out and in;
Praise in each duty and each deed,
However small and mean.

Fill every part of me with praise;
Let all my being speak
Of thee and of thy love, O Lord,
Poor though I be and weak.

So shalt thou, Lord, from me, e’en me,
Receive the glory due
And so shall I begin on earth
The song for ever new.

The life of true holiness is rooted in the soil of awed adoration…No blend of zeal, passion, self-denial, discipline, orthodoxy, and effort adds up to holiness where praise is lacking.” J.I. Packer

Habakkuk’s Prayer of Awe

J.I. Packer’s Rediscovering Holiness


I finished Flyboys by James Bradley on Monday, which is an amazing story of the depravity and heroics of men and women in war. Please don’t get this confused with Flyboys the movie. No comparison! Warning if you get nauseated easy this will be a tough read, but well worth it. I have just started reading J.I. Packer’sjpacker Rediscovering Holiness, which has been quite refreshing. Similar to sliding into a cold mountain stream  during the summer (Stone Mountain State Park)—very cold, but so refreshing. Here are the chapter titles:

What Holiness Is, and Why It Matters
Exploring Salvation: Why Holiness Is Necessary
Appreciating Salvation: Where Holiness Begins
Holiness: The Panoramic View
Growing Downward to Grow Up: The Life of Repentance
Growing into Christ-likeness: Healthy Christian Experience
Growing Strong: The Empowered Christian Life
Hard Gaining: The Discipline of Endurance

Uganda Soccer Ball

Uganda Soccer Ball

Jaclyn Konczal, a 121Church Partner, spent a year in Uganda giving her love to the people of Adjumani just south of the Sudan border. You can check out her expedition here. This soccer ball, photo by Scott Pruett, was a souvenir from her ministry. Here is a link explaining how they make the ball to play the most “beautiful” game.

In case you are interested the Charlotte Eagles are hosting a double header (women’s and men’s soccer) next Saturday night, July 18th. The women will play the Atlanta Silverbacks and the men will play the Real Maryland Monarchs. I look forward to a great night of soccer!

Blog Stats + Rachel

My blog stats went off the charts last week. Don’t get to excited it doesn’t take many visits to send my blog stats up, since there are very few people who follow my blog.

I was encouraged though, to discover why my blog stats were rising last week. I had posted this song, O Church Arise, on my blog and my daughter thought every neighbor in our neighborhood should hear it multiple times. The little things God uses to magnify and glorify Himself!

Jesus used Advance 09 to introduce my worship pastor, Craig West, to the song above, which led him to introduce it to our 121Church body, which led me to post  on the blog, which led my daughter to share with all her neighbor friends. This reminds me of the “long tail” effect that Mark Penn discusses in his book Microtrends. The person at Advance 09 probably never realized that his ministry through music would
extWSend to children without Christ living on Holland St in WS, but it did! I guess this reminds us all to never underestimate how our life effects others for Christ.

John Piper’s tweet on July 1st, 2009 “The man God used to call me from pre-med to gospel ministry never knew it. Don’t judge your life by known effects.”


hondurasMany of you have probably seen Honduras in the news recently, since their President Manuel Zelaya was legally removed from office. It appears  the Organization of American States (OAS) is attempting to stiff arm the judicial and legislative branch of Honduras. The intolerant behavior of these socialistic leaders in Boliva, Nicaragua, and Venezuela is unbecoming. They scream foul play when the US pokes their nose south of the Florida Keys; but when one of their key pawns, Zelayazelayahat, is removed from power in Honduras they resort to international bullying tactics. How would they respond had Zelaya come from a different ideological persuasion than Socialism? Anyways on to a letter from a friend who is a citizen of Honduras.

“Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. Consequently, he who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and he will commend you. For he is God’s servant to do you good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword for nothing. He is God’s servant, an agent of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer.” (Romans 13:1-4)

In Honduras there are 3 independent governing powers: judicial (the power to do justly on behalf of the people by a group of people chosen by the people); legislative (a group of people whose job is to look after the best interest of the society by voting in new laws); and executive (a group of people whose job is to obey and make others obey the constitution, the law, and other legal dispositions.  The president fits into this group).  In our government the check and balances do not allow one power to make a decision without the support and the approval of the others.

These are “the governing authorities,” referred to in Romans, that “God has established” in Honduras; “everyone must submit” to them–even, and most of all, the president.  Manuel Zelaya, our former president, did not only disobey the law (which in it self is sufficient reason for him to be punished), but he was also disrespecting our other God-established authorities on national and international television—and that without shame.  Personally speaking, what kind of president disrespects and makes fun of his own people?

What you hear on the news about the military taking over by force is not true!!!  Honduran law, and any law for that matter, states that if you disobey the law you will be punished by the law.  The military did not perform a coup d’état;   Honduras is not under a military dictatorship.  The army received from the Judicial Supreme Court and Congress of Honduras orders to arrest the President and all who were in power. Others who were like-minded were also arrested for violating our law and disrespecting our people.  Then the military took the president and flew him to Costa Rica.  Their reasons for doing that?  I’m not sure, but I think it is because they wanted to be kind and not put him into prison.

We are not looking to pick fights.  We are protecting and enforcing our law, and as a result, we, an independent, self- governing nation, now have Bolivia, Venezuela, and Nicaragua, lead by Hugo Chavez, intruding into our affairs.  By taking action of our own accord, we are proving to the world that we are taking a strong stand against communism and socialism.  We have not been disrespectful to any other nation. We might be a poor, third-world country, but we have many citizens here who fear God and are not going to idly cross our arms and let just anyone—especially Hugo Chavez—control our country.  In closing, contrary to what many news channels are saying, Honduras IS acting according to law.

Dear friends, please continue to pray for stability and terms of agreement from both sides.”