Daily Hymn Project: Pentecost Edition. Week 4, Psalm 51:7-15

fire-2204171_1920.jpg

I (Cabe) have a distinct memory of the choir at the church I grew up in singing the song "Spirit of the Living God." I don't remember when or how often they would sing it, but I do remember this simple prayer floating gently from their voices and into my ears - and heart. This song is a prayer for the fresh action of God's Spirit to work in us and on us, and even through us. That makes it a great song to accompany you and your family through the month of May, the month when Pentecost often occurs.

Pentecost is both the day we celebrate the gift of the Spirit and mark the beginning of the church. A lot of congregations will read the story of Acts 2 this year on May 20 and hear how the Spirit first descended on those gathered in Jerusalem so many years ago with wind and tongues of fire. The hymn for this month  consider how the Spirit falls upon us afresh us. 

Sing "Spirit of the Living God" (Daniel Iverson)

Spirit of the living God,

Fall afresh on me.

Melt me, mold me, fill me, use me.

Spirit of the living God,

Fall afresh on me.

Read John 7:37-39

“Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean;
wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.
Let me hear joy and gladness;
let the bones you have crushed rejoice. 
Hide your face from my sins
and blot out all my iniquity. 
Create in me a pure heart, O God,
and renew a steadfast spirit within me.
Do not cast me from your presence
or take your Holy Spirit from me. 
Restore to me the joy of your salvation
and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me.
Then I will teach transgressors your ways,
so that sinners will turn back to you.
Deliver me from the guilt of bloodshed, O God,
you who are God my Savior,
and my tongue will sing of your righteousness.
Open my lips, Lord,
and my mouth will declare your praise.” (Ps 51:7–15 NIV)

Devotional

Have you ever tried to drive a nail into a piece of wood…with a screwdriver? Let me guess - it didn't go well, did it? There have certainly been times in my life where I needed a certain tool, but I didn't have one, and I had to improvise. This usually makes the job a lot harder than it should have been, and sometimes it can even be dangerous - I don't recommend it!

The best policy is always to use the right tool for the right job. Think about that in connection to our hymn though: we've asked God to melt us, mold us, and fill us, and now we're asking God to use us. The whole song we've been singing these past several weeks is really a prayer to God, asking him to make us into the people he wants us to be. In other words, we've been asking God to shape us into the right kind of tool for the work that he has for us in the world.

There are a lot of different tools out there, for a lot of different jobs. Ask God what job he might have for you in your life, and pray that he would continue shaping you for that work.

Group Activity

Build something, make something, put something together, or fix something together. Consider using some kind of toys or blocks if your group includes children. Think about the best tool or part for each step. What tool or part do you think you are called to be in God's kingdom?