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Nicholas Hood III Ministries

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Psalm 115 – The Impotence of Idols

Psalm 115

The Impotence of Idols and the Greatness of God

1    Not to us, O Lord, not to us, but to your name give glory,

for the sake of your steadfast love and your faithfulness.

2    Why should the nations say,

“Where is their God?”

3    Our God is in the heavens;

he does whatever he pleases.

4    Their idols are silver and gold,

the work of human hands.

5    They have mouths, but do not speak;

eyes, but do not see.

6    They have ears, but do not hear;

noses, but do not smell.

7    They have hands, but do not feel;

feet, but do not walk;

they make no sound in their throats.

8    Those who make them are like them;

so are all who trust in them.

9    O Israel, trust in the Lord!

He is their help and their shield.

10  O house of Aaron, trust in the Lord!

He is their help and their shield.

11  You who fear the Lord, trust in the Lord!

He is their help and their shield.

12  The Lord has been mindful of us; he will bless us;

he will bless the house of Israel;

he will bless the house of Aaron;

13  he will bless those who fear the Lord,

both small and great.

14  May the Lord give you increase,

both you and your children.

15  May you be blessed by the Lord,

who made heaven and earth.

16  The heavens are the Lord’s heavens,

but the earth he has given to human beings.

17  The dead do not praise the Lord,

nor do any that go down into silence.

18  But we will bless the Lord

from this time on and forevermore.

Praise the Lord!

 

Questions for Reflection:

  1. What does Psalm 115 mean to you?
  2. What are examples of modern day idols that compare to the idols of Psalm 115?

 

Prayer:  Lord, I look forward to this day.  I look forward to the opportunities.  I look forward to the challenges.  I look forward to meeting new people.  I look forward to building upon the relationships that already exist.  I thank you for the gift of life and all that this life represents.  I look forward to every aspect of this day.  In Jesus name I pray.  Amen.

 

Written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Photo by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Additional Prayers Photos and Meditations from Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at https://nicholashoodiiiministries.wordpress.com/

More about the ministry, mission, and meditations from Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at www.nicholashoodiiiministries.org and www.puccdetroit.org

New – Listen to readings from the Book of Psalms and Inspirational Prayers written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at Nicholas Hood3, is now available on Apple Podcasts: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/nicholas-hood3/id1370371705.

Or, at anchor.fm/nicholas-hood3.

Also, on Google Podcasts at Nicholas Hood3

Now on Spotify – https://open.spotify.com/show/1fQTqugJtGj6FCgHaGuG

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

[1] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Ps 115). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

Forgiveness

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Forgiveness for the Man Who Killed Marie Moses- (podcast)

Listen to the newest episode of my podcast, Nicholas Hood3: Forgiveness for the Man Who Killed Marie Moses https://anchor.fm/nicholas-hood3/episodes/Forgiveness-for-the-Man-Who-Killed-Marie-Moses-e26gqf

Remembering Marie Moses

Remembering Marie Moses

Early yesterday morning as I lay on my back finishing my stomach exercises, a pleasant thought filled my mind. I began to think about how important it is to make the most of every relationship, friendship and opportunity in life, because if we miss the moment, it may never return. My mind went back to Hilton Head, South Carolina, and some of the great times Denise and our sons had at the home of Johnella and Greg Moses. The Moses lived in Detroit, but also had a fabulous home in Hilton Head. One of the outstanding features of the Hilton Head home was a swimming pool. Laying on my back yesterday, I began to think of the Moses family and how special they were to my church and to me personally. Greg Moses served as the treasurer of the Plymouth United Church of Christ. His wife, Johnella, seemed to be involved in everything. Before moving to Detroit, Greg Moses was the first senior partner at Coopers and Lybrand. He was a CPA who at one point was the business manager for James Brown and orchestrated James Browns purchase of a radio station. At their previous church in St. Albans New York, Greg led the church in the purchase of a major grocery store. We met their oldest daughter, Marie, and her son, Gregory, on one of the trips to Hilton Head. After a while, Marie and young Gregory also joined the church. Marie was elected a trustee at the church. She was smart, vibrant and vivacious, a pure delight to be in her presence.

Back to the floor of the gym. Feeling great from the workout and pleasant thoughts about the Moses family, I drove to the church to lay out my correspondence for the day, so Regina, our secretary, could hit the ground running. Reviewing the mail on my desk, I noticed a letter from Ionia State Prison. It was from the ex-husband of Marie. In his letter he made a brief apology for killing her and went on to talk about how he and other inmates talk about “Restorative Justice.” He also mentioned that he has found the Lord in prison and now is a minister. Although he has written me a few times since his conviction, I have never responded.

I know the Lord requires me to forgive him for sneaking into his home one Christmas and killing Marie with an axe. I say to myself I have forgiven him, but the truth is I can forgive him because I do not think about him. For the first time since the murder of Marie, I wrote her killer. In short, I told him it was good he has found the Lord after trying to behead Marie. I told him preachers have a more powerful sermon if they can incorporate their personal testimony into their message. I asked him if when talking about restorative justice if he ever shared with the warden and other inmates what he did to Marie? My letter was much more graphic than what I am reducing to this piece, but I concluded by telling him that I forgive him and I pray for his soul.

After reading his letter and spending time yesterday morning writing a response, I must admit that it really bothered me reliving the murder of my friend, Marie. I performed their wedding ceremony. I encouraged the murderer to be a deacon at the church and Marie to be a trustee. When her husband killed her, he emotionally killed her parents and within a few years both died of broken hearts. After her death, we named the Computer Mission of our church, the Plymouth United Church of Christ, after Marie and later added the names of her mother and father. The Computer Mission provides free computers to school children who live near our church.

For me, I am left struggling to forgive a fellow who killed Marie in a cold-blooded fashion. He planned the murder. Bought an axe. Snuck into the house through the basement. Got past the dog. Entered the bedroom where Marie slept with their infant son at her side and slammed an axe into her neck.

Yes, I am struggling to forgive. I know I must forgive. But the question for me is this, what does forgiveness look like? Is it enough for me to say that I forgive? Does forgiveness mean I must forget? I think not! Is it enough for me to put the killer out of my mind and thought process?

I was doing well yesterday until I read the letter of her murderer. Lord, help me to forgive.

Written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Psalm 113 – Podcast and Prayer

Listen to the newest episode of my podcast, Nicholas Hood3: Ps113- God the Helper of the Needy https://anchor.fm/nicholas-hood3/episodes/Ps113–God-the-Helper-of-the-Needy-e2681a

Psalm 113 and Prayer

Psalm 113

God the Helper of the Needy

1    Praise the Lord!

Praise, O servants of the Lord;

praise the name of the Lord.

2    Blessed be the name of the Lord

from this time on and forevermore.

3    From the rising of the sun to its setting

the name of the Lord is to be praised.

4    The Lord is high above all nations,

and his glory above the heavens.

5    Who is like the Lord our God,

who is seated on high,

6    who looks far down

on the heavens and the earth?

7    He raises the poor from the dust,

and lifts the needy from the ash heap,

8    to make them sit with princes,

with the princes of his people.

9    He gives the barren woman a home,

making her the joyous mother of children.

Praise the Lord! [1]

Questions for Reflection:

  1. What does Psalm 113 mean to you?
  2. What are your thoughts regarding verses 7 and 8 where the psalmist says that God, “Raises the poor from the dust, and lifts the needy from the ash heap…?”

 

Prayer:  God, my God, you are a good God!  You have created a world where every person has a chance and possibility for success.  You have bestowed upon each of us opportunity and blessings.  Grant this day your favor.  Show me today what you would have me to do, have me to say, and have me to think.  Make me a tool of your love.  Make me a messenger of your mercy.  Make me a stepping stone of your peace and salvation.  In Jesus name I pray.  Amen.

 

Written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Photo by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Additional Prayers Photos and Meditations from Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at https://nicholashoodiiiministries.wordpress.com/

More about the ministry, mission, and meditations from Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at www.nicholashoodiiiministries.org and www.puccdetroit.org

New – Listen to readings from the Book of Psalms and Inspirational Prayers written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at Nicholas Hood3, is now available on Apple Podcasts: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/nicholas-hood3/id1370371705.

Or, at anchor.fm/nicholas-hood3.

Also, on Google Podcasts at Nicholas Hood3

Now on Spotify – https://open.spotify.com/show/1fQTqugJtGj6FCgHaGuG

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

[1] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Ps 113). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

Psalm 112 – Blessings of the Righteous

Psalm 112 – Blessings of the Righteous

Blessings of the Righteous

1 Praise the Lord!

Happy are those who fear the Lord,

who greatly delight in his commandments.

2 Their descendants will be mighty in the land;

the generation of the upright will be blessed.

3 Wealth and riches are in their houses,

and their righteousness endures forever.

4 They rise in the darkness as a light for the upright;

they are gracious, merciful, and righteous.

5 It is well with those who deal generously and lend,

who conduct their affairs with justice.

6 For the righteous will never be moved;

they will be remembered forever.

7 They are not afraid of evil tidings;

their hearts are firm, secure in the Lord.

8 Their hearts are steady, they will not be afraid;

in the end they will look in triumph on their foes.

9 They have distributed freely, they have given to the poor;

their righteousness endures forever;

their horn is exalted in honor.

10 The wicked see it and are angry;

they gnash their teeth and melt away;

the desire of the wicked comes to nothing. [1]

Questions for Reflection:

  1. What does Psalm 112 say to you?
  2. What are the “Blessings of the Righteous?”
  3. What are your thoughts about when the righteous suffer?

Prayer: Lord, I thank you in advance for the blessings you have in store for me this day. The day is still unfolding, but I know you have a blessing waiting for me. Shower me with your favor. Drench me with your love. Support me with blessings more bountiful than I can imagine. In Jesus name I pray. Amen.

Written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Photo by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Additional Prayers Photos and Meditations from Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at https://nicholashoodiiiministries.wordpress.com/

More about the ministry, mission, and meditations from Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at www.nicholashoodiiiministries.org and www.puccdetroit.org

New – Listen to readings from the Book of Psalms and Inspirational Prayers written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at Nicholas Hood3, is now available on Apple Podcasts: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/nicholas-hood3/id1370371705.

Or, at anchor.fm/nicholas-hood3.

Also, on Google Podcasts at Nicholas Hood3

Now on Spotify – https://open.spotify.com/show/1fQTqugJtGj6FCgHaGuG

[1] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Ps 112). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

Listen to the newest episode of my podcast, Nicholas Hood3: Psalm 112 – Blessings of the Righteous https://anchor.fm/nicholas-hood3/episodes/Psalm-112—Blessings-of-the-Righteous-e25s93

Psalm 111 and Prayer

Yesterday, I felt like the Lord answered a prayer.  Often, it seems like the Lord answers my prayers and talks to me along the way.  In that sense, yesterday was not unusual, but it was still significant. Yesterday was a holiday in the USA, Labor Day.  It began as a slow day.  I called the YMCA to see if it was open.  Footnote: I am on the “66 -year old plan!”  What this means is that I feel like I have to workout regularly and eat a healthy diet.  So, I do resistance training on Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and do something for the cardio on the alternate days.  Because yesterday was Monday, my normal routine would be in the gymnasium.  However, yesterday was a holiday and there was some question whether or not the gym would be open.  The YMCA opens at 5:30 AM.  The other gym I workout at was closed for the holiday.  So, I called the “Y” to see if they were open, but no one answered the phone.  Around 7AM, I told my wife I was planning to ride the bike downtown to see if the Y was open.  She announced that she wanted to ride her bike with me.  The Y is about 4miles from our house.  As it turned out, the Y was open, but because Denise is not a member of the Y, yet, I determined that maybe I would return later in the day.

After passing by the Y, we went to a local coffee shop, Avalon Bakery, on Woodward Ave, and had a light breakfast.  During breakfast she expressed concern that with it being a holiday that no one would come over for a cookout.  I could not bring myself to tell her that I had offered six weeks ago to organize a cookout, but she asked me not to, so I did not invite anyone over for the holiday.  She seemed so sad that no one would come over, without an invitation, I felt bad for her.  Frankly, I was ok if it was just the two of us, but because she was so concerned, I offered a prayer to the Lord, that someone would come over to our house.  This probably may seem like a little thing to someone reading this piece, but to my wife, it was important, so I prayed to the Lord.  I did make one call, to my brother.  I asked him to come over because I thought Denise needed his company.  Denise called her cousin, Joyce, and our son, Noah, who lives in Toledo, Ohio, which is about 60 miles from Detroit, where we live.  Noah and his friend, Meherte did come over.  So did Joyce.  As it turned out, four other people showed up, including her mother and sister, Barbara Wynder and her husband, Matthew and our next-door neighbor, Damon, who I invited across the backyard.  We ended up with an all out party!  Denise was happy, and I went to bed with the confirmation of my faith that God answers prayer!

I am sharing this little story about how I felt the Lord answered my prayer, because Psalm 111, which is my focus for today, is about Praise of God for the wonderous works of God.  While the Psalm centers on the big things that God has done and continues to do, it is relevant for me, because every answered prayer is a blessing – even those prayers that may seem small to us!  Thank you for reading this sharing of my thoughts.

Nick

Psalm 111

Praise for God’s Wonderful Works

1    Praise the Lord!

I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart,

in the company of the upright, in the congregation.

2    Great are the works of the Lord,

studied by all who delight in them.

3    Full of honor and majesty is his work,

and his righteousness endures forever.

4    He has gained renown by his wonderful deeds;

the Lord is gracious and merciful.

5    He provides food for those who fear him;

he is ever mindful of his covenant.

6    He has shown his people the power of his works,

in giving them the heritage of the nations.

7    The works of his hands are faithful and just;

all his precepts are trustworthy.

8    They are established forever and ever,

to be performed with faithfulness and uprightness.

9    He sent redemption to his people;

he has commanded his covenant forever.

Holy and awesome is his name.

10  The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom;

all those who practice it have a good understanding.

His praise endures forever. [1]

 

Questions for Reflection:

  1. Psalm 111 is a Psalm of Praise for the works of God? Which verse in Psalm 111 speaks most to you about your praise of God?

 

Prayer:  Lord, I praise you in the morning.  I praise you during breakfast.  I praise you at the noon day.  And, yes, Lord, I praise you in the darkness of night.  I read your Holy Word and it lights a fire down to the depts of my soul. In my joy, you increase my happiness.  In my sorrow, you erase my misery.  In little ways, and sometimes overwhelming ways, you show yourself, through answered prayer and in other ways, much more subtle.  Lord, you let me know that you are God and still on the throne.  I love you, praise you, and give you the honor for all you have done and those things that remain to be seen.  In Jesus name I pray.  Amen.

 

Written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Photo by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Additional Prayers Photos and Meditations from Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at https://nicholashoodiiiministries.wordpress.com/

More about the ministry, mission, and meditations from Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at www.nicholashoodiiiministries.org and www.puccdetroit.org

New – Listen to readings from the Book of Psalms and Inspirational Prayers written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at Nicholas Hood3, is now available on Apple Podcasts: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/nicholas-hood3/id1370371705.

Or, at anchor.fm/nicholas-hood3.

Also, on Google Podcasts at Nicholas Hood3

Now on Spotify – https://open.spotify.com/show/1fQTqugJtGj6FCgHaGuG

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

[1] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Ps 111). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

Listen to the newest episode of my podcast, Nicholas Hood3: Psalm 111- Praise for God’s Wonderful Works https://anchor.fm/nicholas-hood3/episodes/Psalm-111–Praise-for-Gods-Wonderful-Works-e255rg

Psalm 110 – Assurance of Victory!

 

 

Psalm 110

Assurance of Victory for God’s Priest-King

(Mt 22:44; Acts 2:34–35)

Of David. A Psalm.

1    The Lord says to my lord,

“Sit at my right hand

until I make your enemies your footstool.”

2    The Lord sends out from Zion

your mighty scepter.

Rule in the midst of your foes.

3    Your people will offer themselves willingly

on the day you lead your forces

on the holy mountains.

From the womb of the morning,

like dew, your youth will come to you.

4    The Lord has sworn and will not change his mind,

“You are a priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek.”

5    The Lord is at your right hand;

he will shatter kings on the day of his wrath.

6    He will execute judgment among the nations,

filling them with corpses;

he will shatter heads

over the wide earth.

7    He will drink from the stream by the path;

therefore he will lift up his head. [1]

 

Questions for Reflection:

  1. What message do you received in reading Psalm 110?
  2. What are some of the messages about faith in Psalm110?

 

Prayer:  Lord, in the peace and tranquility through the heat of the night, I hear your voice and feel your presence.  I hear your voice in the sound of crickets in the dark and birds of the morning.  As the wind whispers past the leaves of the trees, I smile and reflect upon a nature that is greater than my life.  The sound of your voice floods my soul with reassurance that there is no mountain too high or valley too low to keep me from the blessing you have prepared for me.  So, Lord, as I face this day, I thank you for life.  I thank you for hope.  I thank you for the favor you have ordered to bless my life.  Grant that today will be a blessing in thy sight.  In Jesus name I pray.  Amen

 

Written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Photo by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Additional Prayers Photos and Meditations from Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at https://nicholashoodiiiministries.wordpress.com/

More about the ministry, mission, and meditations from Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at www.nicholashoodiiiministries.org and www.puccdetroit.org

New – Listen to readings from the Book of Psalms and Inspirational Prayers written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at Nicholas Hood3, is now available on Apple Podcasts: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/nicholas-hood3/id1370371705.

Or, at anchor.fm/nicholas-hood3.

Also, on Google Podcasts at Nicholas Hood3

Now on Spotify – https://open.spotify.com/show/1fQTqugJtGj6FCgHaGuG

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

[1] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Ps 110). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

Listen to the newest episode of my podcast, Nicholas Hood3: Psalm 110 – Assurance of Victory https://anchor.fm/nicholas-hood3/episodes/Psalm-110—Assurance-of-Victory-e24tit

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