This is the cry from our church to our God.
The following is a commentary on the prayer that our church heeds and proclaims.
Lord. You are, and that is enough
A focus that comes from the beginning of Genesis. God is enough for us yet the very reason that we sinned was because we thought that He wasn’t. We begin by reminding ourself that He is enough.
(Gen. 1:1)(John 1:1-18)
Your purity is what we long for
We can not attain perfect purity that our God is yet the Bible pushes us to do so. In an age that has little desire to be holy we cry out for purity to be the focus of our church so that we can be a set apart people.
(Psalm 143:2)(Matt. 6:9)(1 John 1:9)(1 Peter 2:8-10)
The mountains speak through the ages of Your justice and Your mercy
Here we take the imagery from Micah 6 as God calls upon the mountains to be the witness to his love and patience toward Israel. We as well acknowledge that our God is one who requires justice and has made justice possible through the grace of His Son Jesus Christ.
(Micah 6)(Rom. 3:26)
Your majesty is beautiful, yet causes us to tremble
We do not want to have a lowly view of the might of our God. He is Creator, we are created. His nature far exceeds ours. In turn we tremble as Ezekiel did in the presence of the Most High God.
(Isaiah 2:10)(Matt. 7:1-8)(Ezekiel 1)
How can a people such as us enter into Your presence?
A mighty powerful and pure God. How can we be in the presence of this God? This question is the transition into an understanding of our sin that is the separation between us and God.
(Deut. 7:21)(Jer. 7:26)
We gaze upon who You are and find what we are not
Everything that we have described about God shows us how far we are away from Him. Reading about God shows us how impossible it is for us to get right with Him on our own.
(Job 42:6)(Luke 10:13)
Oh, how great our sins are!
This is one of the shortest lines we confess, yet it is one of the most difficult to utter. All our sins are the defilement of our being. They offend a holy God. This knowledge leads us to lament over how sinful we are.
(Neh. 1:6-7)(Acts 2:37-39)(1John 1:5-10)
Sin lies to us with false hope; teach us to hope in You
Sin is not what satisfies us. It is a prostitute that lures us into our doom. No real joy is found in the outcome. The remedy is for us to look over this falsified hope that tempts us and to focus on the hope that we have in Jesus Christ.
(Matt. 6:13)(Rev. 2:4-5)(1 John 2:16-17)(1Cor. 15:54-58)
As the pains of the world lay upon us, we rely upon Your grace
Grace is an undeserved gift. Grace is required for us to get out of the pains of this present age where sin reigns. We want to be a people that cherish this grace that was given to us freely. This is our hope. If there was no grace then we would be helpless to get to our God.
(Acts 20:24)(Rom. 5:1-2)(Psalm 103:12)(Jer. 31:2)(Zech. 12:10)
Great God of mercy, forgive us and cleanse us
Because of this grace we have the ability to be cleansed. Christ Spirit is in us and pushes us to be more like Jesus. In turn, through our confession, we are constantly made more and more into the image of Christ.
(Isaiah 43:25-26)(Isaiah 1:18)(Ephesians 1:7)
Your grace is powerful enough to heal our dry land
After entering into five stanzas dealing with confession we now want to move toward interceding for those around us who are not able to confess their sins because they have not been justified. We see the impact that grace has had upon us and know that it is powerful enough to heal our community, country, and world.
(2 Chronicles 7:14)(Psalm 60:2)
Our neighbors need to see what Your Son has accomplished
Jesus, God’s Son, has accomplished what no other has been able to do. He lived a perfect life, died but did not stay dead. He rose from the grave. His sacrifice has made it possible for us to achieve the level of perfection needed to stand in front of God.
(Mark 12:30-31)(1 These. 4:13-18)
Let their eyes be opened to see Your good news and have faith in what You have done
It is one thing to know about Jesus and a completely different one to have faith in what Jesus has done to make you right in front of God. We who have been made right in front of God want others to see this eternal opportunity for those around the world who do not know. So we cry for those to know and believe.
(Rom. 10:14-15)(John 8)(Rom. 3:21-26)
Use us to proclaim the eternal feat of Your Son’s death and resurrection
As we intercede on behalf of our neighbor and world we want to be the vehicle by which God uses us to proclaim His good news to the world. We want to be used for His glory. This is our the transition into our petitions before God. Use us.
(Matt. 10:16)(Rom. 15:20)(Matt. 28:16-20)(1Cor. 15:3-4)
Give to us so that we can give to others
The grounds behind our request is for us to have so that we can give to those who do not have. Whether this is love, food, salvation, finances, comfort, or clothing; we give because God has given us everything that we need. We keep what we need and give of the blessings of His exceeding grace.
(Matt 6:11)(Proverbs 11:25)(1Chronicles 29:14)
You are worthy, Oh God, to receive all honor, glory, suffering, joy, and love from your people
In the end, why do we do what we do for God? He is worthy. He is worth more to us than precious jewels and gold. More than what prosperity, comfort, lust, gluttony, alcoholism, and consumerism can possibly provide. We do because what He has done renders Him worthy.
(Rev. 5:11-14)(1Peter 4:12-14)
We are able because you have enabled
This stanza and the following three show the progressive work of God through his enabling to have life. This is the work of salvation. In response we show our thanks to God for what He has done to enable us through the life of Jesus Christ. The work of the gospel gets us back to where we need to be, which is resting in God because He is enough for us.
(Heb. 10:8-10)(Eph. 2:8-10)(1John5:11-12)
Your sacrifice has enabled us to have life
The sacrifice of Jesus is not solely to make man a “better person.” Christianity is so much more than making bad people good. Jesus sacrifice was so that dead men could live. This was His mission for us and we see it and believe in the life that He has given.
(Jude 1:21)(2Peter 1:3)(Heb. 7:23-25)
We have life because You are enough
Jesus, You are enough
The following two stanza’s work together in their purpose in the coming conclusion of this prayer. We see as stated in the beginning that Jesus is enough. He is the Alpha and Omega, therefore enough. While we never seem to have enough in this world, Jesus is enough for us. His sacrifice is enough, His love is enough, His grace is enough.
(Rev 21:6)(Heb. 10:8-14)(Phil. 4:18)(Mrk. 14:41)(Jhn. 14:8-14)
So come Lord Jesus and reveal Yourself to us as we live for Your fame
This conclusion states the basic mission of the Christian which is to live for the advancement, fame, and overall glory of God. To do this we need prayers such as this to direct us and push us to be on this mission. We need God to do a divine work here as we live for His fame.
(Rev. 21:1-8)(Rev. 22:16-17)(Rom. 1:16)(Heb. 13:20-21)
*It is important to note that this is not an all inclusive prayer that catches all intercession, petition, thanksgiving, etc. This is simply our prayer for the upcoming days as a church. We hope to see God move in response to our obedience as a church that we live out in this prayer.
Caleb Rawls – is the pastor of Pleasant Home Baptist Church in Laurel Mississippi, and husband to Taylor Rawls. Together they strive to lead the church to reach out to their community and world. And yes, they have a dog named Tiglath-Pileser.