Take a Moment - Psalm 27

Both Suzy and I inherited a strong sense of Christmas tradition from our families. Everything for us was slow and deliberate. First up on Christmas morning were stockings. In my family of four, we sat together on my parent’s bed taking turns removing one item at a time. Gift opening was a similar process; my dad would hand out one gift at time, so each gift that was opened, along with the receiver’s reaction and the giver’s smile of anticipation, had the full attention of everyone present.

I still love these traditions because there are few times in the year when we are more focused and intentional than on Christmas morning, fully living out, reveling in, and enjoying each moment.

My prayer for you in this week between Christmas and New Year’s Day is that you will be able to pursue moments of similar intentionality in time spent with the Lord. Instead of jamming a moment of quiet time into the margins, I would encourage you to set aside some time (put it on the calendar!) to focus fully on the presence of the Lord. Give it the same treatment as you would give your favorite holiday moment. Spend some of the time reading scripture (Psalms are a good place to start), dwelling on and praying through each line as your read it. Spend some of the time in silence before the Lord; quiet your mind and receive from him. Take some time for worship; listen to a favorite worship song or hymn and sing it to the Lord. Finally, take a moment to bare your heart to the Lord; share your hearts desires, your worries, and your concern for others.

Psalm 27

1 The Lord is my light and my salvation;
    whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the stronghold of my life;
    of whom shall I be afraid?

2 When evildoers assail me
    to eat up my flesh,
my adversaries and foes,
    it is they who stumble and fall.

3 Though an army encamp against me,
    my heart shall not fear;
though war arise against me,
    yet I will be confident.

4 One thing have I asked of the Lord,
    that will I seek after:
that I may dwell in the house of the Lord
    all the days of my life,
to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord
    and to inquire in his temple.

5 For he will hide me in his shelter
    in the day of trouble;
he will conceal me under the cover of his tent;
    he will lift me high upon a rock.

6 And now my head shall be lifted up
    above my enemies all around me,
and I will offer in his tent
    sacrifices with shouts of joy;
I will sing and make melody to the Lord.

7 Hear, O Lord, when I cry aloud;
    be gracious to me and answer me!
8 You have said, “Seek my face.”
My heart says to you,
    “Your face, Lord, do I seek.”
9     Hide not your face from me.
Turn not your servant away in anger,
    O you who have been my help.
Cast me not off; forsake me not,
    O God of my salvation!
10 For my father and my mother have forsaken me,
    but the Lord will take me in.

11 Teach me your way, O Lord,
    and lead me on a level path
    because of my enemies.
12 Give me not up to the will of my adversaries;
    for false witnesses have risen against me,
    and they breathe out violence.

13 I believe that I shall look upon the goodness of the Lord
    in the land of the living!
14 Wait for the Lord;
    be strong, and let your heart take courage;
    wait for the Lord!

Sean's Picks

CityAlight - Only a Holy God.
A song recommendation for your moment with the Lord:

Missions Spotlight:
Erica Blickens

- In a unique outdoor, social-distancing ceremony, our Mission School students graduated on 21 November! We are so proud of how they adapted and coped throughout this unusual year. Each student received a graduation gift of an audio Bible for future ministry which were able to be purchased with some of the funds given by Grace. THANK YOU for your faithful support that enables lives to be changed in Mozambique! Please also pray with us for our planning and recruiting for 2021!
- South Africa has once again opened its borders for international travel and I was able to return on December 10th. Praise the Lord!
- Our Màgoé church Building is almost complete! There are still a few minor things to finish, but it is functional and we are so grateful for God’s goodness and for His witness in Màgoé!!
- Please continue to pray for the unrest in northeast Mozambique. I know it is an ongoing prayer request, but lives hang in the balance, and “the prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.” (James 5:16)
- I am so grateful for every prayer and every penny that is sown into God’s ministry through us in Mozambique. Thank you for enthusiastically loving God’s people - even those you have not met!I feel so humbled and privileged to be a part of this Body and God’s worldwide work. May you be blessed beyond comprehension and may you be found resting in Him in this season of hope, faith, joy, love, and peace. Merry Christmas!!!
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