As you grow less
When you confess.
Let Him increase
Fill to the brim
As you decrease
Brimming with Him.
Bow down to Him
In all your dreams
Yield for a yield
Vast in the field.
33 The fear of the LORD is the instruction of wisdom, And before honor is humility.
12 Before destruction the heart of a man is haughty, And before honor is humility.
4 By humility and the fear of the LORD Are riches and honor and life.
2/1/12 ©Fenny West
Charles H. Spurgeon
“Thou hast left thy first love.”Revelation 2:4
Ever to be remembered is that best and brightest of hours, when first we saw the Lord, lost our burden, received the roll of promise, rejoiced in full salvation, and went on our way in peace. It was spring time in the soul; the winter was past; the mutterings of Sinai’s thunders were hushed; the flashings of its lightnings were no more perceived; God was beheld as reconciled; the law threatened no vengeance, justice demanded no punishment.
Then the flowers appeared in our heart; hope, love, peace, and patience sprung from the sod; the hyacinth of repentance, the snowdrop of pure holiness, the crocus of golden faith, the daffodil of early love, all decked the garden of the soul. The time of the singing of birds was come, and we rejoiced with thanksgiving; we magnified the holy name of our forgiving God, and our resolve was, “Lord, I am thine, wholly thine; all I am, and all I have, I would devote to thee.Thou hast bought me with thy blood — let me spend myself and be spent in thy service. In life and in death let me be consecrated to thee.”
How have we kept this resolve? Our espousal love burned with a holy flame of devoutedness to Jesus — is it the same now? Might not Jesus well say to us, “I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love”? Alas! it is but little we have done for our Master’s glory. Our winter has lasted all too long. We are as cold as ice when we should feel a summer’s glow and bloom with sacred flowers. We give to God pence when he deserveth pounds, nay, deserveth our heart’s blood to be coined in the service of his church and of his truth.
But shall we continue thus? O Lord, after thou hast so richly blessed us, shall we be ungrateful and become indifferent to thy good cause and work? O quicken us that we may return to our first love, and do our first works! Send us a genial spring, O Sun of Righteousness.
Lord, on this first Sunday of the year, we will be glad and rejoice in Thee. We will not open the gates of the first Sunday of the year to weak, lack-lustre notes of gratitude, but to the melodious harmony of voices and harps of joy unspeakable and full of glory. We will enter your gates with high praises and into your courts with delight and exuberance. With clean hands and pure heart we will climb the holy hill of the Lord.
Let everything that has breath praise the Lord. Praise God in His sanctuary. Praise Him in the mighty heavens. Praise Him for His acts of power. Praise Him for His greatness- surpassing greatness. Praise Him with the trumpet. Praise Him with the harp and the lyre. Praise Him with the guitar and the flute. Praise Him with the keyboard and the dance. Praise Him with the cymbal, resounding cymbal. Let everything that has breath, praise the Lord. Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, whom he had redeemed from the hands of the enemy.
Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord. Let us shout aloud to the Rock of our Salvation. In His Hands are the depths of the earth and the mountain peaks belong to Him. The sea is His for He made it and His Hands formed the dry land.
We are His people and sheep of His pasture.
We will put on the garment of praise to dispel any spirit of heaviness. Our God is good and is enthroned on high and is in full control, working everything together for the good of His own. This morning, we will celebrate how good and pleasant it is to be called children of God. We will rejoice that we are New creatures in Christ Jesus and that old things are one and new things have come. We will exalt the Lord our God and worship at His footstool because holy is He. We will proclaim, ‘What a mighty God we serve, glorious in holiness fearful in praises!’ We will declare Your majesty, Your sovereignty, our integrity, Your righteousness, goodness, loving-kindness, unfailing love, Your power, Your wisdom and Your faithfulness. For You are the Lord, the Lord God, merciful and gracious, extra-ordinarily patient and abundant in goodness and in truth.
We will lift Jesus higher above every principality and power. We will focus on the Pre-eminent One Who was and is and is to come. We will bow to He who holds the key to death and hade, the Resurrection and the Life.
11 Yours, O LORD, is the greatness, The power and the glory, The victory and the majesty; (sovereignty, integrity, authority, righteousness, wisdom, dominion, pre-eminence. You rule from sea to sea. You are the head of all principalities and powers. You measure the earth with the span of Your Hands; weigh the mountains on Your scale; the nations are like a drop in a bucket. You uproot kingdoms and set up kingdoms. Who is like unto You ? what god is like our God?
The cattle on the thousand hills are yours; the earth in all its fullness is yours. Silver and gold are yours. Your made everything- great and small.
You spoke and it was done. ‘The grass may wither and the flowers may fade but your word abides forever.’
‘For all that is in heaven and in earth is Yours; Yours is the kingdom, O LORD, And You are exalted as head over all.’
In this year of open heavens, let the heavens open with rain for Your people in their due season. In this year of open heaven, let the prayers of Your people rise like a sweet smelling savour into Your nostrils unhindered. In this year of open heavens, let the heavens be glad and the earth rejoice. In this year of open heavens, let iron gates open of their own accord to the redeemed of the Lord. In this year of open heavens, let let the voice of God be heard expressly and let Your people respond with unqualified obedience. In this year of open heavens, let their joy be full. In this year of open heavens, let every wall of Jericho come tumbling down and the glory of God fall; let the fire of God fall; let salvation of souls come like a deluge; let the house of the Lord be full. In this year of open heavens, let Your people walk in love and in faith as never before. In this year of open heavens, help us to forget the former things and look forward to the new things which are in store for us. O that we will symphonise and flow with Your Holy Spirit as He leads us into the promised land flowing with milk and honey. O that we will march as one man, keeping rank and experiencing synergy come from the Holy Spirit.
We thank You for Your exceedingly great and precious promises, through which You have made us partakers of Your divine nature. In this year of open heavens, we will through faith inherit the promises, in Jesus Name. Our hands will not be slack or feeble. In the day of Your power, our strength will not be small. Forgetting the former things- achievements and failure- we will press on and reach forward for the mark of the prize of our high-calling in Christ Jesus.
Lord, make us fire brands in Your Hands; make us sharp threshing instruments having teeth with the ability to beat mountains small. O that we will crave, desire and pant for your word more than our daily food. Teach us to pray Your word and Your mind rather than our weak words or pet wishes. Help us to see through Your eyes and partner with You to do Your will on earth as it is in heaven. O Lord, give us hearts after Your own heart, like David of old.
Burn Your word: ‘Come out from amongst them and be ye separate’ into our hearts; replaying it to us until we are saturated, galvanised, submitted and driven to sanctification and consecration.
Yours is the glory, and the honour and the praise, in Jesus mighty and matchless name. Amen.