Good evening! Please read Matthew 8:23-27.
In Mark and Luke’s accounts of this story, Jesus asks His question after the storm. In Matthew’s account, He asks it during the storm. We don’t know which disciple had the most accurate memory, but it makes you think – at what stage in a crisis is your faith in the best state? At the beginning, at the end, or when you are still in the middle of it? We are at the beginning of what may be a long ‘storm’, and our faith will likely go up and down. We must remember that God’s faithfulness to us does not waver. Let’s sing:
Hymn – Great is Thy faithfulness
1. ‘GREAT is Thy faithfulness’, O God my Father,
there is no shadow of turning with Thee;
Thou changest not, Thy compassions they fail not;
as Thou hast been Thou forever wilt be.
‘Great is Thy faithfulness! Great is Thy faithfulness!’
Morning by morning new mercies I see!
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided –
‘Great is Thy faithfulness’, Lord, unto me!
2. Summer and winter, and springtime and harvest,
sun, moon and stars in their courses above,
join with all nature in manifold witness
to Thy great faithfulness, mercy and love.
3. Pardon for sin and a peace that endureth,
Thy own dear presence to cheer and to guide,
strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow,
blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside!
Thomas O Chisholm, 1866-1960
Give thanks for God’s faithfulness, even when we are unfaithful. Pray for Christians, that they might remain firm in the present crisis, and give good testimony in the places they live.
- Pray for those on the WEC prayer list
- Pray for our leaders, our PM and his cabinet, that God would protect them and give them wisdom and courage.
- Pray that people would turn to God.
Our next hymn praises our sovereign God for His wise and merciful plans. Read the hymn through before you sing it.
1) We give immortal praise
to God the Father’s love,
for all our comforts here,
and better hopes above;
He sent His own eternal Son
to die for sins that man had done.
2) To God the Son belongs
immortal glory too,
who bought us with His blood
from everlasting woe;
and now He lives, and now He reigns,
and sees the fruit of all His pains.
3) To God the Spirit’s Name
immortal worship give,
whose new-creating power
makes the dead sinner live;
His work completes the great design,
and fills the soul with joy divine.
4) Almighty God, to Thee
be endless honours done,
the undivided Three,
and the mysterious One:
where reason fails, with all her powers,
there faith prevails, and love adores.
Isaac Watts, 1674-1748
- How should we pray in the light of these things?
- Are you more prone to being ‘passive’ or ‘paralysed’?
- Thank God for His sovereign lordship over everything in your life.
Our last hymn is a wonderful expression of faith in God, even when we simply can’t fathom what He is doing! (Tagalog version!)
1) GOD moves in a mysterious way
His wonders to perform;
He plants His footsteps in the sea,
and rides upon the storm.
2) Deep in unfathomable mines
of never-failing skill
He treasures up His bright designs,
and works His sovereign will.
3) You fearful saints, fresh courage take;
the clouds you so much dread
are big with mercy, and shall break
in blessings on your head.
4) Judge not the Lord by feeble sense,
but trust Him for His grace;
behind a frowning providence
He hides a smiling face.
5) His purposes will ripen fast,
unfolding every hour;
the bud may have a bitter taste,
but sweet will be the flower.
6) Blind unbelief is sure to err,
and scan His work in vain;
God is His own interpreter,
and He will make it plain.
William Cowper, 1731-1800
‘Now the God of hope, fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may overflow in hope. Amen.’