Nicodemus

Nicodemus
by Bob Brown

Nicodemus came to Jesus
He was the leader of a sect
A Pharisee of Pharisees
Among his peers, elect

He most surely had credentials
A religious Phd
So he came to Jesus by night
With his curiosity

For he recognized all the miracles
This religious Phd
But he went beyond his religion
For he knew who Jesus might be

And during his conversation
With the God of incarnate love
Could it be that Nicodemus
Was born again from above?

“Nicodemus” was written by Bobby Brown, the author of “Seated Above Looking Below”.

Now available on paperback here:

Seated Above, Looking Below: Poems to Lift Your Spirit

Walking With God

Walking With God

God wants us to lack nothing
Like Adam and Eve in the lush, abundant garden
But this wasn’t enough
Not for Adam
Not for Eve
Not for you nor me
We want more.

Adam and Eve walked with God
Except for one dreadful day
For me, it’s every day
Because I push Him away.

I proudly hone my skills
And I ask God for proof
I desire junk
He wants to give of Himself
Which is everything!

If you walk with God you have the greatest source of knowledge
Of love
Of strength
Of peace
Of hope
Of joy
Of companionship.

So draw near to God
He is already near to you
He is closer than your breath
He is nearer than your dearest friend.

The benefits of walking with God far outweigh the risks
You are walking with the One who is all knowing
You walk the valley of death with Him who sees it merely as a shadow
He is leading you somewhere
Step by miraculous step
Somewhere incredible.

Your life is a journey
It begins with Jesus
It ends with Jesus
And the Holy Spirit is in between
Like a Holy sandwich.

He is leading you home
Your eternal home
That’s what your life is about!
Walk with God.

Circulate with Him.
Perambulate
Roam
March.

He will guide
Lead
Orientate
Usher
Direct
He will show you the way.
Walk with God.

The Love Prayer

An example of how to pray through the Scriptures:

Lord, Please help me to be patient,
Help me to be kind,
Help me to shake this envy, and not be boastful,
Help me to be humble and not proud,
Help me to honor others and not to be self-seeking,
Help me be very slow to anger,
Help me to banish all records that I keep of wrong,
Help me to rejoice in truth and shun evil,
Help me to always protect those whom you have entrusted to me,
Help me to always trust,
Help me to always have hope,
Help me to persevere,
Because love never fails.
This, I know, remains – faith, hope and love.
But the greatest of these is love.

- based on 1 Corinthians 13:4-8, 13

Too Many Denominations

Too Many Denominations!

Satan hates unity in Christ. 
God blesses unity.

I appeal to you, brothers and sisters, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another in what you say and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly united in mind and thought. – 1 Corinthians 1:10

41,000!

How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity! – Psalm 133:1

That’s the number of different Christian denominations in the world today – 41,000!!
Confusing?
By Bobby Brown

Should I become a Catholic?
Lord, I’m just not sure
Or maybe a Baptist or Methodist
Would help me to endure

Should I become a Pentecostal?
We’re so divided, it’s almost amusing
Or maybe a Presbyterian, or Lutheran
God, it’s just so confusing

Should I become an Episcopalian?
God, somebody must be right
Or maybe a Congregationalist
Will help me to see the light

But God is not the author of confusion
As thru a dark glass, we see
And the body of Christ will not be divided
When we get to eternity!

Finally, brothers and sisters, rejoice! Strive for full restoration, encourage one another, be of one mind, live in peace. And the God of love and peace will be with you. – 2 Corinthians 13:11 

Points to Ponder

There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. – Galatians 3:28

“And afterward, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions.” – Joel 2:28

I <3 that “all people.”

“In essentials, unity; in non-essentials, liberty; in all things, charity.” – Augustine

The above poem by Bobby Brown, the author of “Seated Above, Looking Below”, is available on Amazon at this link:

Seated Above, Looking Below: Poems to Lift Your Spirit

God’s Talking to You!

May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had, so that with one mind and one voice you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. – Romans 15:5-6

In Closing
Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited. – Romans 12:16
 

For the record, I am a “Confessional Lutheran.” We base our doctrines on the Bible, and not so much on traditions, human reason or personal experiences, but I suppose that many denominations will make similar claims. Bottom line is that I am where God wants me to be. I am not confused. I am certain. I pray that you feel the same.

Strength

Strength!
Boston Strong!
Physical strength.
Mental strength.
Emotional strength.
Soul strength.
Creative strength.
Behavioral strength.
Unique strength.
Heart strength.
Mind strength.
Character strength.

Lord, as I age over the decades, my talents may lessen, my skills may diminish, my resources can change or be lost, but I ask You for help to focus so that my character strengths will soar for your glory.
God, bless this, I pray.

A fifty something worship leader.

I am told that people are like trees: the shadow of the tree is reputation, the fruit of the tree is personality, but the roots of the tree are the most important – character!

The Deep Calls Unto the Deep

THE DEEP CALLS UNTO THE DEEP
By Bobby Brown
(Based on Psalm 42:7)

My cup, it steams with tea
My apartment is very still
THE DEEP CALLS UNTO THE DEEP
The depth, it is God’s will

My table is filled with books
My candle begins to glow
A beautiful quiet fills my kitchen
And inspiration begins to grow

My thoughts begin to lengthen
At the close of day
And outside my window
The sunset splits the grey

My peace begins to deepen
My tea is good to taste
And as I enter into solitude
I abandon my life of haste

And since I’m SEATED ABOVE
I sense God’s inner powers
My tongue’s the pen of a skillful writer
These quiet, mystical hours

I labor with “His” energy
That powerfully works within
And after meditation and prayer
It’s time to now begin

In Christ, I am enriched
The tea, I savor to sip
And into the Living Waters
I now begin to dip

My God he fills my mind
Just like the candle’s light
And as He fills my spirit
Again, I begin to write…

The Gift of Music

The Gift of Music

Good musicians say that it is not the notes but the pauses between the notes that make music.

Our God just pours out blessings upon blessings on us believers through His gracious gift of music. We need to use it wisely to His glory. Just pause for a moment and think about how great music really is.

To take the gift of music and use it for the reason God gave it to us is nothing short of miraculous, no matter how simple or how elaborate the offering is, how new or old it is and whether it is accompanied by one instrument or one hundred. As long as it proclaims truth and comes from a heart of praise, our singing delights the heart of God. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

The Musician

• The Holy Spirit fills the heart of the musician to the point of overflow.

• Filled musicians will easily find the “pocket” of the song.

• A good musician is humble, with a heart longing after God’s.

• A good musician does not want to be on a platform. They desire the opposite; to be made “less of” so that God may increase. They understand that if you don’t have a hunger for the things of God, then you must be full of yourself.

• A good musician will not only lead a congregation in worship, their actions will command it. Being filled with the Spirit, they will engage you to sing, to praise, to pray, to feel the music and to listen with your heart. People will want to join in and sing.

The Lyrics

• Good lyrics embrace me. Like a rare earth magnet, they can pull you into the song.

• Good lyrics are memorable. They are truthful, Christ-centered, gospel-focused, bursting with grace, filled with scriptural language and remind us of hope. I recently heard the word hope described as this acronym: “Hold On, Pain Ends.”

• Good lyrics become part of your vocabulary.

• Good lyrics stimulate your emotions, especially longing to be with God

The Music

• Music is a symphony of harmonies blending together around a melody and being carried by a groove that diffuses into your heart.

• A good melody is easy to sing and as memorable as Yankee Doodle Dandy. It is enjoyable. It adds strength to the lyrics. It matches the mood and feeling of the worship.

• A good beat gets your foot tapping; even the most stoic Lutheran.

The Test

You’ll know when you have heard a good song, offered by a gifted musician who understands the source of the gift, with finely honed truth-filled lyrics and a beat that drives the message into your melon – it’s the song that you’ve chosen for your funeral! My guess is that it’s hymn.

 

A Toolbox for Worship Leaders, Pastors and Musicians

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