Lately I have been wrapping up my sermon in preparation for Sunday. I am speaking on Mark 1:14-20 where John is arrested and Christ begins his ministry. He begins his ministry with a unique call to Kingdom living. Jesus Christ expects radical change and transformation in his follower’s lives. We must be focused on he alone. This Puritan prayer from The Valley of Vision came to my mind this morning:
Thy main plan, and the end of thy will
is to make Christ glorious and beloved in heaven
where he is now ascended,
where one day all the elect will behold his glory
and love and glorify him forever.
Though here I love him but little,
may this by my portion at last.
In this world thou hast given me a beginning,
one day it will be perfected in the realm above.
Thou hast helped me to see and know Christ, though obscurely,
to take him, receive him,
to possess him, love him,
to bless him in my heart, mouth, life.
Let me study and stand for discipline,
and all the ways of worship,
out of love for Christ;
and to show my thankfulness:
to seek and know his will from love,
to hold it in love,
and daily to care for and keep this state of heart.
Thou hast led me to place all my nature and happiness
in oneness with Christ,
in having heart and mind centred only on him,
in being like him in communicating good to others;
This is my heaven on earth,
but I need the force, energy, impulses of thy Spirit
to carry me on the way to my Jerusalem.
Here, it is my duty
to be as Christ in this world,
to do what he would do,
to live as he would live,
to walk in love and meekness;
then would he be known,
then would I have peace in death.