Preparing our Hearts for Worship
 O LORD God of hosts, who is mighty as you are, O LORD, with your faithfulness all around you?  You rule the raging of the sea; when its waves rise, you still them.  You crushed Rahab like a carcass; you scattered your enemies with your mighty arm.  The heavens are yours; the earth also is yours; the world and all that is in it, you have founded them.  The north and the south, you have created them; Tabor and Hermon joyously praise your name.  You have a mighty arm; strong is your hand, high your right hand.  Righteousness and justice are the foundation of your throne; steadfast love and faithfulness go before you.  Blessed are the people who know the festal shout, who walk, O LORD, in the light of your face,  who exult in your name all the day and in your righteousness are exalted.  For you are the glory of their strength; by your favor our horn is exalted.  For our shield belongs to the LORD, our king to the Holy One of Israel.
- I encourage you to take some time this week to enjoy the faithfulness of God that surrounds Him, and you. While we can’t see the raging sea here in Tennessee, we can see some very majestic sunrises and sunsets. If you find yourselves in East Tennessee some time in the near future, the Smokey Mountains could serve as your Tabor or Hermon.
- Consider the righteousness, justice, steadfast love, and faithfulness demonstrated for us in the cross. Christ, who is righteous, died so that justice would be fulfilled. Yet these things were done in order to fulfill ancient promises (faithfulness) made in a solemn covenant that God himself initiated without any merit in mankind (steadfast love).
- Consider how blessed you are to know the faithfulness of God, not just in nature, but in the experience of grace. Sunsets are common to all men, but the revelation of Jesus Christ is special. We can celebrate the God of nature not merely as nature’s God, but as our own Father. This raises us to new joy, and brings to the lips the festal shout.
- It is the Knowledge of God in the face of Jesus Christ that brings joy to our hearts, and strengthens our faith. It is this Knowledge that becomes a shield to us. Our King, King Jesus, is the Holy One of Israel.
Scripture Readings for the Week
Sermon Passage for Next Week