“Mercy”

“God, be merciful to me, a sinner!” Luke 18:13

God of the Publican,

Be merciful to me a sinner; this I am by nature and practice, this the Word proclaims me to be, this I hope I feel myself to be; Yet Thou hast not left me to despair, for there is no ‘peradventure’ in Thy grace; I have all the assurance I need that with Thee is plenteous redemption.

In spite of the number and heinousness of my sins Thou hast given me a token for good; The golden scepter is held out, and Thou hast said, ‘Touch it and live.’ May I encourage myself by a sense of Thy all-sufficiency, by faith in Thy promises, by views of the experience of others. To that dear refuge in which so many have sheltered from every storm may I repair.

In that fountain always freely open for sin may I be cleansed from every defilement. Sin is that abominable thing which Thy soul hates, and this alone separates Thee and me. Thou canst not contradict the essential perfections of Thy nature; Thou canst not make me happy with Thyself, till Thou hast made me holy like Thyself.

O holy God, make me such a creature as Thou canst take pleasure in, and such a being that I can take pleasure in Thee. May I consent to and delight in Thy law after the inner man, never complain over the strictness of Thy demands, but mourn over my want of conformity to them; never question Thy commandments, but esteem them to be right. By Thy Spirit within me may my practice spring from principle, and my dispositions be conformable with duty.

–The Valley of Vision

The Deepest Need in Preaching: A Majestic View of God

“There are always two parts to true worship. There is seeing God and there is savoring God. You can’t separate these. You must see him to savor him. And if you don’t savor him when you see him, you insult him….The greatness and the glory of God are relevant. It does not matter if surveys turn up a list of perceived needs that does not include the supreme greatness of the sovereign God of grace. That is the deepest need. Our people are starving for God.”—John Piper, The Supremacy of God in Preaching

Who Will Be the Leaders of the Church in 10 years?

“Knowing that fighting the good fight requires a multitude of leaders and realizing that leaders sometimes become casualties, Christian leaders must intentionally reproduce themselves and multiply. Some leaders are casualties by divine appointment, and unfortunately some are casualties by carelessness. But eventually all of us will be called home. Who will be there to take our place?…The church as the family of God must be committed to the reproduction and multiplication of leadership. One of the reasons the church falters in the next generation is because we do not pass on the legacy of Christian leadership and fail to disciple effective leaders who can take the church and its mission forward to extend the kingdom of God to the next level in the next generation.”—Harry L. Reeder III and Rod Gregg, The Leadership Dynamic