Gates of Praise https://www.dpmuk.org/article/devotional-gates-of-praise
Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. For the LORD is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.
How important it is for each of us to know the way into God's presence! How do we enter His gates? How do we come into His courts? The psalmist points out the way that God has ordained: We enter His gates with thanksgiving, His courts with praise. It is only as we come to God with thanksgiving and with praise that we have access into His presence.
The prophet Isaiah likens the presence of God among His people to a city, concerning which he says: "You will call your walls Salvation and your gates Praise" (Isaiah 60:18). The only way through those walls of Salvation is by the gates of Praise. Unless we learn to approach God with praise, we have no access into His presence.
Confronted with this requirement, we are sometimes tempted to look around us at our situation and ask: "But what do I have to thank God for? What do I have to praise Him for?" There may be nothing in our immediate circumstances that appears to give us cause to thank or praise God.
It is just here that the psalmist comes to our help. He gives us three reasons to thank and praise that are not affected by our circumstances: first, the Lord is good; second, His love endures forever; third, His faithfulness continues through all generations. All three are eternal, unchanging facts. If we truly believe them, then we have no alternative but to praise God for them-continually!
Mrs. Karen Poort
Growing in Faith
One of our guiding documents at Woodstock Christian School is the Student Character Profile. In developing this document a few years ago, our desire was to articulate more fully the words in our tagline - FAITH, LEARNING, COMMUNITY. As we partner with you in your child's education, join us in praying for and and working together to cultivate, and to model for our children/ students these key characteristics and skills. While GROWING IN FAITH, students will:
• live their lives in thankfulness to God, praising and serving him
• think critically, test the spirits of this age, and show thoughtful discernment
• share their conviction that Jesus Christ is the Saviour of the world and that God the Father is the creator and keeper of all
• have a sense of wonder for the fallen but beautiful creation
• show basic Biblical literacy, cultivate a Christian worldview that combines intellectual understanding of God's call on their life with the awareness of the need for action through the prompting of the Holy Spirit
• possess a deep understanding of God's grace and a sense of humility about self
• articulate that God created them uniquely as his image-bearers, that God loves them, and has called them serve in this world
C. Verbeek, Principal
We are all aware of the distraction and distance our cell phones can or have created with others and the impact they can have on relationships. In November, I was reminded of the blessings that can come when devices are absent from a gathering.
During Parent/Teacher conferences we (the staff) were blessed to have supper prepared for us. As a staff we gathered in the staff room to break bread together. We had an hour to look up and meet each other face to face. During that time the room was filled with much conversation, laughter, support and really, over all, peace. It was lovely.
It wasn't until I returned to my classroom and checked my phone (that I had left on my desk) that I realized the blessing and the presence of God that existed. It hit me that NO ONE, I repeat NO ONE was on their phone or even had it out. We were truly in community. We were truly breaking bread together. We were truly in relationship with each other. We were doing what God has intended for each of His children- being in and building relationships.
God has put that deep sense of desire to connect, to belong and be face to face with others in each of us. Next time you are at home, out with family or friends, watching your kids play a sport; etc; Look Up! Don't miss the blessings God has waiting to pour out on you and those you are with.
It’s a brand new year! Welcome back to WCS in 2020. Wishing you God’s blessings, strength and grace as you journey through this year. Whether you are about to walk through the greatest year of your life, or the most challenging, know that God’s word and promises hold true. It’s a new year and as we plan how we will live our lives this year, perhaps make some changes and resolve to do things better, be guided by these words from Psalm 119 in which the psalmist recognizes God as a God who makes and keeps promises, who is strong, generous, wise, and loving. Teach me lessons for living, give me insight, guide me down the road of your commandments, give me a bent for your words of wisdom, divert my eyes from toys and trinkets, invigorate me on the pilgrim way, affirm your promises to me Let your love, God, shape my life with salvation, exactly as you promised (vs 33-41, The Message. Reframe: Today) Be confident that God will use you and build you this year. Trust that he will provide and that his grace and love will continue to flow over and through you.
Blessings for 2020.