Turn Worry Into Prayer

Today is Wednesday, August 14, 2019. Blessings to you!

Day 22,434

Only five days until S turns 26!!!

The birthday celebrations will be bittersweet, of course, as we pause to celebrate the life of our dear friend, Greg Jordan. The funeral will be Saturday morning at 10:00, at the church that they attended before they started coming to our church. Brandon, Terry, and I have been asked to lead a couple of songs at the funeral. This, I’m sure, will be quite the challenge for all three of us. We will be singing “Amazing Grace (My Chains Are Gone)” (Chris Tomlin), and “God Is So Good (You Are Worth)” (Pat Barrett). In addition, I will be leading our usual blessing song at the end, “Benediction,” by Matt Redman. There will also be visitation on Friday evening.

We still plan to go to Mineral Wells on Monday, as C and I are both taking the day off for S’s birthday. There, we will have lunch with Grandma and celebrate the birthday girl. It has also been decreed that we will be getting mani/pedis on Sunday afternoon.

The Rangers lost to the Blue Jays again, but at least it wasn’t a blowout this time. 3-0. Much better than 19-4, but, in the long run, it’s still an “L.” The score doesn’t really matter, does it? Lance Lynn took the loss. The Rangers are 59-60, in third place in the AL West, 18.5 games out of first place, and eleven out of the wild card race. They will try one more time this afternoon, in Toronto, with Kolby Allard taking the mound. They have forty-three games left.

The Red Sox managed to beat the Indians, 7-6, in ten innings. Brandon Workman got the win in relief, and Andrew Cashner got a save. Maybe that’s what he needs to do instead of starting? The Sox are 63-59, in third place in the AL East, 17.5 games out of first, and 8.5 out of the wild card race. They will also play an afternoon game today, in Cleveland. Brian Johnson will get the start. They have forty games left.

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL AND PRAYERS
All Scriptures are from the ESV unless otherwise noted

The Mighty One, God the LORD, speaks and summons the earth from the rising of the sun to its setting. 
Out of Zion, the perfection of beauty, God shines forth.

Psalm 50:1-2

Today I am grateful:
1. For the mercy of God, that sustains us in times of grief and mourning
2. For the many testimonies of the kind of life that Greg Jordan lived
3. That my fate doesn’t rest in my hands, but is fully in God’s hands
4. That we can turn worry into prayer
5. That in the presence of the Lord, there is fullness of joy (Psalm 16:11)

“O God, in the course of this busy life, give us times of refreshment and peace;
and grant that we may so use our leisure to rebuild our bodies and renew our minds,
that our spirits may be opened to the goodness of your creation;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.”
(The Book of Common Prayer, Prayers and Thanksgivings, 32. For the Good Use of Leisure)

(From Daily Guideposts 2019)

PRAYING THROUGH THE PSALMS; The Value of Honest Confession, by Julie Garmon

Keep steady my steps according to your promise, and let no iniquity get dominion over me.
Psalm 119:133

I won’t go into great detail about the circumstances of today’s reading, but simply summarize to say that Julie and her friend discovered that they were both trying to control what their husbands were doing. Well, not so much what they were doing, as much as the outcomes.

That’s a big problem for a lot of us, isn’t it? We want to control the outcome. We do lots of preparation, or, in many cases, just as these two friends were doing, worry a lot about how things are going to work out.

But here’s the thing . . . look back up at number three in my gratitude list. The outcome is not in my hands! We don’t want to minimize the importance of solid preparation and hard work. But the point here is to not worry about the outcome. That’s God’s job.

A few days back I quoted another blog that said something to the effect of, if you know how to worry, you know how to meditate. What an insightful statement of truth that is, because worry is nothing more than negative meditation.

Now, I’ve never been one to jump on the whole “positive thinking” bandwagon. I don’t believe that all negative thoughts/statements are necessarily bad. I refuse to use the word “opportunity” instead of “problem.” The problem doesn’t go away because you call it something different.

But in this reading, today, Julie Garmon said, “we turned the sin of worry into prayer.”

How profound! Just as my fellow blogger indicated, worry can become something positive if we turn it around and focus on the right thing/person. If, instead of worrying, I immediately went to prayer, I don’t imagine the outcome would be affected, but my attitude certainly would. And, if, instead of worrying, I meditated on either the Lord, himself, or some passage of Scripture, my mindset would change.

We can have confidence in the Lord. As I’ve repeated several times in the past week or so, we have this statement in Psalm 16:11: You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore. And, while we are always in the presence of the Lord, when we are meditating on him, purposeful, focused, thinking, we seem to be more in his presence, if that’s possible.

And in his presence, there is fullness of joy!

Father, thank you for these reminders about worry. Help me to turn any thoughts of worry directly into prayer and meditation today. Help me meditate on the right things and on just you. May I enjoy your presence today, and fullness of joy, even in the face of unspeakable sadness. Joy, unspeakable joy.
Even so, come, Lord Jesus!

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Fearfully and Wonderfully Made

Today is Thursday, June 13, 2019

Day 22,372

Twenty-one days until July 4

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL AND PRAYERS
All Scriptures are from the ESV unless otherwise noted

Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD, the people whom he has chosen as his heritage!
The king is not saved by his great army; a warrior is not delivered by his great strength. 
The war horse is a false hope for salvation, and by its great might it cannot rescue.

Psalm 33:12, 16-17

Today I am grateful:
1. That I do not rely on the strength of men, armies, or horses to “save” me
2. For growth in Christ, no matter how small
3. For the steadfast love of the Lord that never ceases (Lamentations 3:22)
4. That the Lord is always with me, even when I don’t feel his presence
5. That I am fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14)

Almighty and everlasting God, who in the Paschal mystery established the new covenant of reconciliation: Grant that all who are reborn into the fellowship of Christ’s Body may show forth in their lives what they profess by their faith; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
(The Book of Common Prayer)

I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.
Psalm 149:14

Erin Janoso writes in Daily Guideposts of finding a “small, brilliantly purple stone, while out jogging. The sun was reflecting off of the dew-covered surface of the stone. She picked it up, put it in her pocket, and continued on her way home, looking forward to sharing it with her four-year-old daughter.

At first, she was disappointed when, upon pulling it out of her pocket, she found that, as the stone had dried, it had become just another bland grey rock. However, she took it to the kitchen sink and held it under the water from the faucet. As the stone became wet again, the purple-ish shimmer returned.

This is a perfect example of how we might appear in the eyes of God, compared to how we appear to ourselves. When I look at myself (inside and out), I see nothing remarkable. I see a plain, bordering on elderly, overweight, balding man. Inside I see a mish-mash of emotions and feelings, covering the range from love to almost-hate to compassion to judmentalness.

But when I stop and consider the truth of Psalm 139:14, that I am “fearfully and wonderfully made,” I realize that I must appear differently in God’s eyes than I do my own. Do I shimmer as I reflect his glory each day? Or am I dried up and grey like that stone?

I suspect that it varies from day to day. I make it my goal to reflect his glory every day.

Father, may I be better at reflecting your glory each day, as I rely on your Spirit to inspire me and motivate me.
Even so, come, Lord Jesus!

The LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you; the LORD lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace.

Grace and peace, friends.

Gentle and Courteous

Today is Wednesday, June 12, 2019.

Day 22,371

Twenty-two days until July 4

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL AND PRAYERS
All Scriptures are from the ESV unless otherwise noted

The LORD brings the counsel of the nations to nothing; he frustrates the plans of the peoples. 
The counsel of the LORD stands forever, the plans of his heart to all generations.

Psalm 33:10-11

Today I am grateful:
1. For the love that C and I share
2. For the love of God
3. For God’s peace
4. That God can change us
5. That God is reminding me to be gentle and courteous toward all people

O God, you have created all things by the power of your Word, and you renew the earth by your Spirit: Give now the water of life to those who thirst for you, that they may bring forth abundant fruit in your glorious kingdom; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
(The Book of Common Prayer)

A reminder from Paul’s letter to Titus: Remind them . . . to speak evil of no one, to avoid quarreling, to be gentle, and to show perfect courtesy toward all people. (Titus 3:1b-2)

Let brotherly love continue. Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares. Remember those who are in prison, as though in prison with them, and those who are mistreated, since you also are in the body.
Hebrews 13:1-3

Patty Kirk writes today’s Daily Guideposts reading. It’s not so much about angels as it is about the way we treat people. She illustrates with an encounter in her own life.

As she goes on her daily run, she passes a couple of feed mills. Their big trucks are always going to and fro as she runs. They leak grain, of course, which attracts birds. But they also scare off the birds because they are big, noisy, and smell like diesel.

One day, though, one of those trucks stopped alongside her, as she was running. The driver, it turned out, recognized her. She was his seventh grade teacher. He reached out of his truck to shake her hand (she believes he would have hugged her, had he been able to reach her). They had a conversation, a pleasant time. Says Kirk, “His rosy face and unexpected warmth filled me with goodwill for days after that run.”

Her prayer at the end is what got me. “Father, I’m so self-centered and mean. I’m sorry.”

There is the guttural language of prayer! Eugene Peterson speaks of the language of prayer being the first kind of language we learn. Early on, it has no words, because we haven’t learned any, yet. Eventually, however, this more intimate language gives way to the languages we use for information (school and learning) and motivation (or manipulation). We tend to forget the first language as we become well-versed in the others.

Here, Patty Kirk remembers “Language I.” She simply blurts out, in complete honesty, the truth. This is how we should pray. I had tears in my eyes as I read her prayer. Tears because I find myself being the same way, much of the time. It’s not intentional, and I don’t believe it was with her, either. It just happens.

Go back and take a look at that verse from Titus up there, a verse that was inserted before I even read the Guideposts reading! In our modern age, I believe all Christians (especially involving social media) would do well to remember that verse. “Speak evil of no one,” “avoid quarreling,” “be gentle,” “show perfect courtesy.”

There’s no room for interpretation, here. These are plain and simple commands. And who knows? We might just be dealing with an angel.

Father, I echo the prayer of Patty Kirk. Please forgive me for when I am self-centered and mean. Teach me your ways. Help me to be gentle and courteous to all people, in your name, and in your Spirit, to your glory.
Even so, come, Lord Jesus!

He will cover you with his pinions, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness is a shield and buckler. Psalm 91:4

Grace and peace, friends.

Find the Gold, Discard the Mud

Today is Wednesday, May 29, 2019.

Day 22,357

Thirty-six days until July 4

Once again, I’m short on time. The Texas Rangers won, 11-4. Adrian Sampson got the win. They’re 26-26, in third place in the AL West, nine games out. They play Seattle again today, at 2:40 PM CDT. Jose Leclerc will take the mound for Texas

The Red Sox lost, 7-5, when the Indians scored 5 in the top of the ninth. Travis Lakins took the loss. They are 29-26, in third place in the AL East, 6.5 games out. They play Cleveland again today, at 5:10 PM CDT. Ryan Weber will start for Boston.

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL AND PRAYERS
All Scriptures are from the ESV unless otherwise noted

Love the LORD, all you his saints! The LORD preserves the faithful but abundantly repays the one who acts in pride. 
Be strong, and let your heart take courage, all you who wait for the LORD!

Psalm 31:23-24

Today I am grateful:
1. That this is only a four day work week
2. That, even though it may feel/look the same, this morning is completely new and different from yesterday morning
3. That all parts of the body of Christ are equally needed
4. That, no matter how dark my day might seem, there are moments of beauty to be embraced and treasured
5. For the Psalms, which teach me to respond to the Word of God to me

We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you,
because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

If we have died with him, we shall also live with him;
if we endure, we shall also reign with him.

We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you,
because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

(The Book of Common Prayer)

(From Daily Guideposts 2019)

Those who seek me diligently find me. . . . My fruit is better than gold, even fine gold.
Proverbs 8:17, 19

“No matter how awful my day has been, there are always some gifts of beauty in it, however small. Every night I review my day and ask God to help me find them, and He always does.”

So begins today’s reading, as writer Kim Taylor Henry recounts some words from a dear friend who is battling a serious illness. Those words triggered a memory in Kim’s mind, a memory of being eight years old, next to her grandpa, who was showing her how to sift mud to find gold.

“My friend’s comments remind me God is our expert gold miner. No matter how dirty or dark our days, they hold nuggets of beauty, of God’s wonders–gifts of life as it is meant to be.” Just like the gold miner, it is up to us to sift through the muck and mire and find those “nuggets” and discard the mud.

This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.
1 John 1:5
And we have the prophetic word more fully confirmed, to which you will do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts.
2 Peter 1:19

Father, as cliche as this may sound, help me find the gold in each day, and, most especially, help me throw away the mud, the parts that I don’t need to dwell upon. Help me seek you today, knowing that, if I seek, I will find. Spirit remind me of that truth, that I may have confidence in my seeking. And show me the beauty. When I start focusing on the negative, because I probably will, show me the beauty.
Even so, come, Lord Jesus!

Now to him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you blameless before the presence of his glory with great joy, to the only God, our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen.
Jude 1:24-25

Grace and peace, friends.

Five Senses

Today is Sunday, May 19, 2019.

Day 22,347

Eight days until Memorial Day

No time for trivial matters, this morning. We are getting ready for our worship gathering. We worship with The Exchange Church, which meets at the Northpark YMCA, at 9100 N. Beach Street, in Fort Worth, Texas. Our worship gathering begins at 10:15 AM.

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL AND PRAYERS
All Scriptures are from the ESV unless otherwise noted

O LORD my God, I cried to you for help, and you have healed me. 
O LORD, you have brought up my soul from Sheol; you restored me to life from among those who go down to the pit.

Psalm 30:2-3

Today I am grateful:
1. For another opportunity to worship God with my church family
2. That we didn’t get any damaging weather at our house, yesterday
3. That the one who endures until the end will be saved (Matthew 24:13)
4. That I still have all five of my senses
5. That the Lord has made a beautiful world in which to engage those senses

Dear People of God: Our heavenly Father sent his Son into
the world, not to condemn the world, but that the world
through him might be saved; that all who believe in him
might be delivered from the power of sin and death, and
become heirs with him of everlasting life.

We pray, therefore, for people everywhere according to their
needs.
(The Book of Common Prayer)

(From Daily Guideposts 2019)

Having eyes do you not see, and having ears do you not hear? And do you not remember?
Mark 8:18

In today’s reading, Evelyn Bence writes of moments of worship involving he senses. It begins with the observation of a beautiful afternoon sky, arrayed with colors of gray and mauve. As she focused on the sight, she thought, “Thank you, Creator God.”

But then she focused on sounds. “A schoolboy dribbling a basketball . . . a chorus of birdcalls . . . katydids portending season change.” On the way home from her walk, she engaged sight again, noticing “low-lying, late-blooming roses” that she had missed before.

All of this reminded her of a visit she had made one Sunday to the National Cathedral. She was anticipating seeing, the target being the bishop’s rose garden. But when she arrived, she was treated to an unexpected sound treat: “a rarely completed full-bell peal, a sequence of tolls–more than five thousand variations–that lasted three hours.”

As she sat near the roses, reading a book, and enjoying the sounds, a carload of tourists arrived. “They animatedly pointed toward, touched, and with great fanfare smelled the blossoms. Before long, the scene sank in: they were talking with their hands. Sign language.” With great wonder, Evelyn realized, “They can’t hear the bells! They are savoring what they can experience!”

She experienced a flood of gratitude for her full array of senses as she approached the rose bushes, drawing the fragrant blooms to her face.

We are beings with senses. Five of them: Seeing, hearing, touching, smelling, tasting. I am blessed to still have all of mine available. Some have lost one or more over time. Some were born without one or more. This reading has brought tears of gratitude to my eyes, as well as a bit of shame as I realize how much I have taken these senses for granted.

Father, may I employ all of my senses to experience you, praise you, and worship you, today. Remind me every time I see, hear, touch, taste, and smell, that you are the reason for all of those senses and that I should use them to glorify you.
Even so, come, Lord Jesus!

The heavens are yours; the earth also is yours; the world and all that is in it, you have founded them.
Psalm 89:11

Grace and peace, friends.

Tune Out the Noise

Today is Thursday, April 25, 2019.

Day 22,323

Fourteen days until our Vegas trip!!

Quote of the Day

“Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished”
Lao Tzu, Chinese Philospher
BrainyQuote

Word of the Day

Fairy chess ~ Any of various versions of chess involving unorthodox rules or pieces. Also: an unorthodox chess problem. (Oxford English Dictionary)

I’ll be glad when this week is over. It’s always an emotional week for our family. In fact, I think I’ll just go ahead and be glad when April is over. I mean, everything is okay, you know. It’s just that this particular stretch of days is full of emotion as we remember the days around the death and burial of my father. Today marks four years since his funeral. I guess that’s all I’m going to say about it.

The Texas Rangers tied up the game in the top of the seventh, yesterday afternoon, and went into the ninth tied 5-5. The youth of the team came into play, however, in the bottom of the ninth. After Chris Martin missed a ground ball that went right past the pitcher’s mound, the runner on first then stole second base. No one covered the base. Both the second baseman and the shortstop (Elvis had the day off, for some reason), ran behind the bag to back up whoever was supposed to cover the bag. The batter then hit a bloop single, scoring the runner from second and winning the game for Oakland. So the Rangers were swept by the A’s. Chris Martin also took the loss for the game. They are now 12-11, still in third place, ahead of Oakland by .03 percentage points. They continue their west coast trip tonight, playing Seattle at 9:10 PM CDT. Some guy named Hearn will take the mound for the Rangers.

The Red Sox, already winning the game, scored seven runs in the bottom of the eighth, at least three of which were scored on consecutive walks by Detroit pitching. They won the game 11-4, to avoid being swept by the Tigers. E Rodriguez got his second starting win of the season. The Sox are now 10-15, in fourth place in the AL East, six games behind Tampa Bay. They actually play the Tigers one more time tonight, at 6:10 CDT, so they have the opportunity to not lose the series. Rick Porcello will take the mound, still seeking his first victory.

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL AND PRAYERS
All Scriptures are from the ESV unless otherwise noted

Make me to know your ways, O LORD; teach me your paths. 
Lead me in your truth and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation; for you I wait all the day long.

Psalm 25:4-5

Today I am grateful:
1. For generally good health, in spite of a few issues that relate to my obesity
2. For the love of God, richly lavished on all who believe in him, and even, to some degree, poured out on those who don’t
3. For the grace of God that gives me life in Christ
4. That God speaks to us
5. That we can hear him through the noise of the world, if we just listen

Almighty and everlasting God, who in the Paschal mystery
hast established the new covenant of reconciliation: Grant
that all who have been reborn into the fellowship of Christ’s
Body may show forth in their lives what they profess by their
faith; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth
and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever
and ever. Amen.
(The Book of Common Prayer, Thursday in Easter Week)

(From Daily Guideposts 2019)

But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.
James 1:22

Writer Ashley Kappel relates an event in her life when her two-year-old son Jake got his head stuck in a railing at Disney World. Naturally, she first tried bending the iron bars, as most of us would probably do, and of course that did not work. A nearby mom shouted that she had lotion. I’m sure there were other shouts and a measure of cacophony around them.

Suddenly, Ashley realized that a dad behind her was calmly repeating the same thing over and over. “Turn his shoulders, and push him through.” She finally turned to look at him. Gesturing to a family of seven little boys, he said, “The biggest part of him is already through. Just turn his shoulders and push, then lift him back over the railing.”

Not only is this excellent advice to remember if you ever encounter a child with his head stuck in a railing (I don’t know that I’ve ever thought of this), it is a reminder of how God speaks to us. Remember Elijah? All alone in that cave, he hears earthquakes, wind, and fire, but the voice of God was not in any of those. God does not speak through the noise of the world. He speak in the “still, small voice,” or gentle whisper that Scripture tells us about.

We have to learn to tune out the noise to hear the voice of God. That is what quietness and meditation helps us do. That is why we need to memorize Scripture. To help us tune out that noise.

Father, help me to tune out the noise of the world today, which can take many different forms, some good, some bad. Help me to learn how to hear you through it all.
Even so, come, Lord Jesus!

Glory be to God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, so it is now and so it shall ever be, world without end. Alleluia. Amen.

Grace and peace, friends.

Jesus Triumphed FOR Us

Today is Tuesday, April 9, 2019.

Day 22,307

Thirty-fifth day of Lent

Thirty days until our Vegas trip!

Nothing much happened, yesterday. There was no baseball (at least for my two teams). It was Mama’s birthday, and I called her to wish her Happy Birthday. We worked, we came home, we ate chili and watched Good Girls and Speechless, we went to bed. See? Pretty dull day, huh?

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL AND PRAYERS
All Scriptures are from the ESV unless otherwise noted

Now I know that the LORD saves his anointed; he will answer him from his holy heaven with the saving might of his right hand.
Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the LORD our God.

Psalm 20:7

Today I am grateful:
1. For another day to walk in his Kingdom
2. That C continues to feel better as the healing continues
3. For the great mercy and lovingkindness (hesed) of the Lord
4. That, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us
5. That Jesus triumphed over sin and death, for us

That it may please thee to give to all people increase of grace to hear and receive thy Word,
and to bring forth the fruits of the Spirit,
We beseech thee to hear us, good Lord.

That it may please thee to bring into the way of truth all such as have erred,
and are deceived,
We beseech thee to hear us, good Lord.

That it may please thee to give us a heart to love and fear thee,
and diligently to live after thy commandments,
We beseech thee to hear us, good Lord.

That it may please thee so to rule the hearts of thy servants,
the President of the United States,
and all others in authority,
that they may do justice,
and love mercy,
and walk in the ways of truth,
We beseech thee to hear us, good Lord.
(The Book of Common Prayer, The Great Litany)

“God cannot give us a happiness and peace apart from Himself, because it is not there. There is no such thing.” ~ C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity

(From Daily Guideposts 2019)

For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life.
Romans 5:10

There’s an old Easter hymn that I always loved when I was growing up.

“Low in the grave He lay–
Jesus my Savior!
Waiting the coming day–
Jesus my Lord!

Up from the grave He arose,
With a mighty triumph o’er His foes
He arose a victor from the dark domain,
And He lives forever with His saints to reign.
He arose! He arose!
Hallelujah! Christ arose!”

Ginger Rue, today’s Guideposts writer, points something out that I have never thought of, in regard to those words. Actually, her husband pointed it out. He said he didn’t like that line that says, “He arose with a mighty triumph o’er his foes.” In her husband’s words, “That’s not what happened. We were all His foes, because our sinful nature puts us at enmity with God. In spite of that, Jesus loved us enough to die for us. So when He arose, He wasn’t triumphing over us. He was triumphing for us.”

I will echo Ginger’s response.

“Wow.”

Perhaps the hymn writer had this idea that Jesus rose from the dead, stepped out of the tomb and said, “So there!!” Or, “I told you so!”

But, truthfully, that is not what happened is it? No one, with the possible exception of a couple of Roman guards, who fainted, saw the resurrection. There was an earthquake, that much we know, and somehow that giant stone was rolled away (uphill, based on all accounts I’ve ever read) from the mouth of the tomb, and Jesus quietly came out of the tomb. By all accounts, he was not seen by anyone else until Mary Magdalene made her way to the tomb.

It was a triumph, but not over his foes. “He didn’t see His glorious resurrection as a triumph over those who put Him in the grave, because no one had the power to put Him there. He chose to go. The triumph was over death, sin, and our separation from Him. We were God’s enemies, yet He died for us!”

Ginger’s husband was right. We were his foes! See Romans 5:10. Jesus did not triumph over us, he triumphed for us!

Addendum: It occurred to me, while I was showering, that the hymn writer could very well have intended that sin and death were the “foes” over which Jesus was victorious. If that was the case, most of my post is wrong.

Father, thank you for the triumph of Jesus Christ over sin and death. Thank you that, by grace, you loved us enough to die for us, even while we were yet sinners, even while we fought against you. In the words of the Psalmist, “Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high; I cannot attain it.”
Even so, come, Lord Jesus!

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope. (Romans 15:13)

Grace and peace, friends!