March 15, 2012
The difference between the law and the good news of Jesus is not that law is about dry duty and Jesus is about heart-felt affections. They are both about love. It’s just that the law only describes the life of love. The good news of Jesus, when trusted, actually produces it.
From Glen Scrivener’s March 15, 2012 devotional entry “Love Thy Neighbor” at the King’s English
March 15, 2012
Last week we were reminding and encouraging our readers to pray for the Anglican1000 Church Planting summit, and by all accounts, that was a successful and useful gathering for equipping those with a vision for church planting.
[update: just discovered audio files for 9 of the presentations from the Anglican1000 summit are online. Go to the Anglican1000 Resources page and click on the audio tab]
I was encouraged this morning to read the ACNA website news feed which featured an interview with the Rev. Aaron Burt who heads up a church planting movement in the Northwest USA.
The interview concludes with a section related to how the wider Anglican community can be praying and supporting Northwest Anglican in their church-planting work:
5. How can we pray for and support the work of Northwest Anglican?
Any and every way possible! Many days I have felt keenly aware of the fact that we would not have gotten this far were it not for the support — prayers, finances, connections, and encouragement — of many people. To be candid, we still need that support just as much as ever.
Pray that Northwest Anglican would continue to boldly participate in God’s mission here, and pray for our staff: myself, Rev Scott Walker, and Rev Kristen Yates. Give financially if you can; we run incredibly lean, so every small bit goes a long way. Connect us with people who might support us in one of these ways, people who might want to join one of our plants, or people who you think would be encouraged by our work. And support us with encouraging words by dropping us a line at http://www.NwAnglican.org/contact. Don’t sell that last one short; we love to be spurred on by our family in Christ!
To learn more about Northwest Anglican, offer support, or get involved, visit www.NWAnglican.org
The full article is here
Heavenly Father, we pray that all those with Northwest Anglican working to plant churches and share the love of Christ would know the truth of your promise today and in the weeks and months ahead:
2 Cor 9:8
8 And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.
Lord, lavish Your grace and blessing upon them that they may abound in good works for Your renown and glory.
March 15, 2012
While preparing my post yesterday with links to Online Anglican devotional resources for Lent, I did a bit of Googling too, to see if there might be some additional resources I might discover.
And I did discover a resource that looks to be excellent: Daily Audio Devotionals for morning & evening prayer from St. Paul’s Anglican (REC) church in Baton Rouge, LA.
Here’s the link to the calendar for the current month’s daily devotionals
Here’s how the devotionals are described on the St. Paul’s website:
Here you can listen to daily morning and evening devotionals following the readings from the Book of Common Prayer and special days in the Church Calendar. Father’s style is pastoral in nature and seeks to encourage in hearers a love for Christ, a trust in his grace, confidence in his Word and promises and a life of devotion and prayer. Each devotional includes comments from Father Toms, a reading from the Scriptures and prayers adapted from classic devotional literature. Each devotional is less than 10 minutes in length, and you can listen to them on your computer or remote device (cell phones and tablets).
I listened to both of yesterday’s devotionals and this seems like it might be a great resource.
Note: St. Paul’s church website also has an Online Lenten Journal with a number of different articles for Lent available. I’ll be posting about that separately.
March 15, 2012
I thought this exhortation from the March 7 Lenten Devotional at Anglican Mainstream was particularly powerful. Note March 7 is the commemoration of the martyrdom of Perpetua and the other saints of Carthage:
At this point in Lent it would serve us all well to insure that we have clarity about sincere repentance. Ideally we should not see it as a dread or obligation but be open to it as a gift of the Holy Spirit that compel to purity and grace with a deep yearning. To journey through Lent to Easter without repentance is to no journey at all. What guides us on that journey? It is the Truth, the Way and the Life. Once we repent the pattern for a Holy Lent that becomes and enlivened Easter is the imitation of Christ. Certainly that conviction is what comforted and compelled St. Perpetua and her companions to be bold in the faith, sincere and truthful knowing the Easter promise is theirs. Now we must make ready to insure that it is ours.
The full devotional is here.
The Lenten Discipline suggested for this day was as follows:
Lenten Discipline – Reflect on the challenges and choices you have in your life to express a sincere and truthful celebration of the Gospel. Keep a journal of when you have been sincere in the faith and perhaps the times you may have been disingenuous about your faith and practice. Pray that the Holy Spirit will fill you with the conviction to bear witness to your baptism just as St. Perpetual and her companions did without compromise.
March 15, 2012
Then the apostles gathered to Jesus and told him all things, both what they had done and what they had taught. And he said to them, “Come aside by yourselves to a deserted place and rest a while.” For there were many coming and going, and they did not even have time to eat. So they departed to a deserted place in the boat by themselves. (Mark 6:30-32)
Holy Spirit, lead us all into those quiet times and places to be with Jesus where we are free from distractions.
Jesus, there is so much “coming and going” on around me — help me to be quiet with you.
Father, please bless the retreats that take place at the Christ the King Spiritual Life Center and at the Convent with the Sisters of St. Mary and in parishes around the diocese. Help them to be times and places of reporting in to Jesus and just being with him in quietness. Father, I long for streams of living water to flow through me and throughout this diocese. Send your Holy Spirit upon us. Thank you.
A word received: I will do what you cannot.
Thursday:  or 42,43 * 85, 86; Gen. 46:1-7,28-34: 1 Cor. 9:1-15: Mark 6:30-46
Friday: 95* & 88 * 91, 92; Gen. 47:1-26: 1 Cor. 9:16-27: Mark 6:47-56
Notes from the Front Line
***** Start now reading and reflecting on the lessons for Sunday so that you can receive all that God has for you (John 6:4-15; Ephesians 2:4-10; 2 Chronicles 36:14-23; Psalm 122).
***** Date: Wed, 14 Mar 2012
From: Nigel Mumford
Subject: Daily Quote…
Allow the healing grace of Christ the healer to permeate the wound, be it physical, emotional or generational. Persevere, press on, seek the Lord Himself. “He is faithful and He will do it. ” 1 Thessalonians 5:24
March 15, 2012
Pastor Scotty Smith’s March 14 prayer at his blog Heavenward was focused on prayer itself, and his struggles to rightly understand James 5:16
The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.James 5:16
His insight on our need to trust in Christ as the righteous man and as our “prayer warrier” is extremely striking. I’ve been falling into the same trap he describes of focusing on my own righteousness and thinking I somehow need to be more holy before I can pray effectively in a way that will please God.
here’s an excerpt:
First of all, I used to assume that the only “powerful and effective” prayer was one to which you responded with a rousing “Yes!”; and secondly, I thought the health of my prayer life was directly related to my maturity as a Christian. What a crippling Christ-less thought.
I thought the more righteous I was, the more inclined you’d be to answer my prayers affirmatively; and if I wasn’t getting my prayers answered, it was probably because of un-confessed sin in my life or because your were trying to teach me some lesson. What a horrible misunderstanding of prayer and a gospel-less approach to discipleship. No wonder it was easier for me to talk about you than to commune with you.
Thankfully, the gospel has been deconstructing and rebuilding my prayer life. Jesus, I now understand that you are the “righteous man” whose prayers are powerful and effective. You are our great prayer warrior—ever living to pray for us, and ever so graciously purifying our prayers as they rise to heaven. We don’t have any righteousness except the righteousness which we’ve freely received in you.
Jesus, because our lives are now hidden in you, because of our unbreakable union with you, because our permanent address is “in Christ,” we’ve been set free to pray with palms-up boldness.
The full prayer is here. Read it and reflect on it. I think it is a powerful truth that those of us called to a prayer ministry need to often call to mind.