Prayer Focus for the month of July 2014
O ocean of mercy, oft longing I’ve stood
Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.
We as Christians are boundless through the love of Christ! But as humans we are constricted by our selfish needs and ways. How many times have we said something about our church brother or sister that was unwholesome? When circumstances don’t go our way, are we bitter or are we blessed? The Lord has given us the greatest opportunity and mission to love those around us as he has loved us. He does not hold onto us but sends us out into the world!
What is our mission as the Church, the bride of Christ? A common saying is that ‘actions speak louder than words’, however in addition to that 1 Corinthians 13:3 says, ‘If I give all my possessions to feed the poor, and I surrender my body to be burned, but do not have love, it profits me nothing’ (New American Standard Version). Where is our love being shown? How is our love being shown? The Lord provides us with many examples of great actions committed with greater love in his Word. Jesus saves and sends. We are each great examples of his boundless love. We are great examples of his boundless mercy.
We believe that the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments were given by inspiration of God, and that they only constitute the Divine rule of Christian faith and practice – Salvationist Doctrine 1.
‘The Bible demonstrates God’s desire for a relationship with humanity. This is expressed in the Old Testament in the establishment, maintenance and fulfillment of covenants and in the New Testament through the incarnation of Jesus Christ. God is active in the lives of individuals, inviting them into relationship with him. God is ever-present and inescapable, as well as one who speaks clearly at decisive or critical times in our lives, whether directly or through other people’ – The Salvation Army Handbook of Doctrine, p 10.
God invites us into a relationship with him. He extends his mercy, his love and his arms to us. And now we extend those to our brothers and sisters around us. Take time to examine your relationship with Christ. Are you upholding your end of the deal? How are your relationships with those around you? And not just those in your immediate area. Have you reached out to the people in your community? What great action can you do with greater love today? We are boundless!
Lord, we thank you for life. We thank you for breathing into us new life. We pray for a revival in our spiritual lives. That we will seek a relationship with you. That we may strengthen our relationship with you. Our lives can be consumed with worldly things but help us to keep our focus on you and your will for us. Amen.
Lord, we thank you for our brothers and sisters. We bring them before you and our relationships with them. Help us to reach out our hands to our fellow man. Help us to bring your Word and your love and your mercy to those who need it. Let us live a boundless life through you. Amen.
The Monthly Prayer Focus is provided by the International Social Justice Commission