John Nunnikhoven is a member of The Fellowship of Ailbe and has begun working toward what, Lord willing, will become a re-awakening of the Church as a body directed into living the Kingdom in the here and now as it awaits the yet to come.
Books by John Nunnikhoven
A Psalm of David, for the memorial offering. O LORD, rebuke me not in your anger, nor discipline me in your wrath! For your arrows have sunk into me, and your hand has come down on me. There is no soundness in my flesh because of your indignation; there is no health in my bones because of my sin. For my iniquities have gone over my head; like a heavy burden, they are too heavy for me. My wounds stink and fester because of my foolishness, I am utterly bowed down and prostrate; all the day I go about mourning. For my sides are filled with burning, and there is no soundness in my flesh. I am feeble and crushed; I groan because of the tumult of my heart.
What is there in my soul that has not been exposed to the Light? What filth and deception is hiding within me to separate me from You? Show lurking sin no mercy, Lord, excise it and restore to me a clean heart. Continue that work of sanctification in me that began with the cross and will end at Your return. Your love and mercy knows no boundaries, Your grace is triumphant over all my sin.
Wait for the LORD and keep his way, and he will exalt you to inherit the land; you will look on when the wicked are cut off. (35) I have seen a wicked, ruthless man, spreading himself like a green laurel tree. (36) But he passed away, and behold, he was no more; though I sought him, he could not be found. (37) Mark the blameless and behold the upright, for there is a future for the man of peace. (38) But transgressors shall be altogether destroyed; the future of the wicked shall be cut off. (39) The salvation of the righteous is from the LORD; he is their stronghold in the time of trouble. (40) The LORD helps them and delivers them; he delivers them from the wicked and saves them, because they take refuge in him.
Wait on the Lord, -- patience, little man, patience. Keep His way -- perseverance, little man, perseverance. Take refuge in Him -- not in someone or something else, little man, in Him alone.
Your righteousness is righteous forever, and your law is true. Trouble and anguish have found me out, but your commandments are my delight. Your testimonies are righteous forever; give me understanding that I may live.
Righteous forever! Your righteousness and Your testimonies! A perfect North Star to guide me, never obscured by clouds only by vision dimmed by unwillingness. Where ever I go, where ever I am, no matter what the situation I am in, if I look to Your Word, it is righteous and true, never failing, the source of wisdom and understanding.
The wicked plots against the righteous and gnashes his teeth at him, but the Lord laughs at the wicked, for he sees that his day is coming. The wicked draw the sword and bend their bows to bring down the poor and needy, to slay those whose way is upright; their sword shall enter their own heart, and their bows shall be broken. Better is the little that the righteous has than the abundance of many wicked. For the arms of the wicked shall be broken, but the LORD upholds the righteous. The LORD knows the days of the blameless, and their heritage will remain forever; they are not put to shame in evil times; in the days of famine they have abundance. But the wicked will perish; the enemies of the LORD are like the glory of the pastures; they vanish--like smoke they vanish away. The wicked borrows but does not pay back, but the righteous is generous and gives; for those blessed by the LORD shall inherit the land, but those cursed by him shall be cut off. The steps of a man are established by the LORD, when he delights in his way; though he fall, he shall not be cast headlong, for the LORD upholds his hand. I have been young, and now am old, yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken or his children begging for bread. (26) He is ever lending generously, and his children become a blessing. Turn away from evil and do good; so shall you dwell forever. For the LORD loves justice; he will not forsake his saints. They are preserved forever, but the children of the wicked shall be cut off. The righteous shall inherit the land and dwell upon it forever. The mouth of the righteous utters wisdom, and his tongue speaks justice. (31) The law of his God is in his heart; his steps do not slip. The wicked watches for the righteous and seeks to put him to death. The LORD will not abandon him to his power or let him be condemned when he is brought to trial.
The reward that is promised here is if I turn away from evil and seek Your face. To be upheld by You, to be kept from shame in times of great evil and to enjoy the abundance of Your provision in times of famine, to know that I inherit the Kingdom of Heaven, to know that when I trip You are there to catch me and keep me from stumbling, that my children will be cared for by You, that the word of my mouth are Your wisdom and Your justice, that Your law is written in my heart, and that You will not abandon me to the power of the wicked. Praise You, Lord.
Of David. Fret not yourself because of evildoers; be not envious of wrongdoers! For they will soon fade like the grass and wither like the green herb. Trust in the LORD, and do good; dwell in the land and befriend faithfulness. Delight yourself in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the LORD; trust in him, and he will act. He will bring forth your righteousness as the light, and your justice as the noonday. Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him; fret not yourself over the one who prospers in his way, over the man who carries out evil devices! Refrain from anger, and forsake wrath! Fret not yourself; it tends only to evil. For the evildoers shall be cut off, but those who wait for the LORD shall inherit the land. In just a little while, the wicked will be no more; though you look carefully at his place, he will not be there. But the meek shall inherit the land and delight themselves in abundant peace.
Oh, this is hard, Lord, it is so much easier to fret. To continue to trust in You as the world collapses around me, to continue to carry out Your directives for my life in the face of trials and temptations. To watch others live lives of idleness as You lay out areas of ministry for Betty and I. But the joy of being with You and in Your will far exceeds the temptations of the world.
Oh, continue your steadfast love to those who know you, and your righteousness to the upright of heart! Let not the foot of arrogance come upon me, nor the hand of the wicked drive me away. There the evildoers lie fallen; they are thrust down, unable to rise.
I am dealing with arrogance, Lord, but is it the arrogance of others or mine? If mine; lead me in the path of repentance and transformation. If of others; lead me in the path of humility and love. And in all, give me the wisdom to recognize the source and respond appropriately.
Your steadfast love, O LORD, extends to the heavens, your faithfulness to the clouds. Your righteousness is like the mountains of God; your judgments are like the great deep; man and beast you save, O LORD. How precious is your steadfast love, O God! The children of mankind take refuge in the shadow of your wings. They feast on the abundance of your house, and you give them drink from the river of your delights. For with you is the fountain of life; in your light do we see light.
This morning, this beautiful morning as I sat in my chair, reading, studying, meditating and praying Your word, the day was dawning. Your sun was rising and revealing all the beauty of Your creation before me as its light lifted the darkness. Mountains, fields, trees, colors, shadows, stone walls, fences, barns, flower beds, all shouting the glories of the creation with their own voices. Praising Your goodness. I am awestruck by the display and filled with joy.
To the choirmaster. Of David, the servant of the LORD. Transgression speaks to the wicked deep in his heart; there is no fear of God before his eyes. For he flatters himself in his own eyes that his iniquity cannot be found out and hated. The words of his mouth are trouble and deceit; he has ceased to act wisely and do good. He plots trouble while on his bed; he sets himself in a way that is not good; he does not reject evil.
Lord, the ability of the unrepentant heart to justify and excuse behavior is an ability without superior. I know, deep in my heart that a course of behavior is wrong, but I can explain and justify why it is appropriate at this time and in these circumstances. I can conveniently forget that You hate evil and abhor sin. I am a master of self-justification and delusion.
Let those who delight in my righteousness shout for joy and be glad and say evermore, "Great is the LORD, who delights in the welfare of his servant!" (28) Then my tongue shall tell of your righteousness and of your praise all the day long.
Lord, thank you for this beautiful and joy-filled weekend. Thank You for the time Betty and I had together and with dear friends. Thank You for bringing us home in safety. Thank You for the Moore's home and hospitality, a measure of Your love. Thank You for the teachings, for Chuck and Mark, T.M. and Bob, Chris, for Martha and Kay. Bless all of them. And thank You for all who attended, for their contributions and teachings and for their love.
My eyes shed streams of tears, because people do not keep your law
It is those who claim to be Your people, Lord, who despise Your law, run after the thrills and momentary pleasures of this world, join in the "fun and games." How can we testify to the power of Your love when we do not show the effects of that love to the world? Who is carrying a message of conviction to these young people?
How long, O Lord, will you look on? Rescue me from their destruction, my precious life from the lions! I will thank you in the great congregation; in the mighty throng I will praise you. Let not those rejoice over me who are wrongfully my foes, and let not those wink the eye who hate me without cause. For they do not speak peace, but against those who are quiet in the land they devise words of deceit. They open wide their mouths against me; they say, "Aha, Aha! Our eyes have seen it!" You have seen, O LORD; be not silent! O Lord, be not far from me! Awake and rouse yourself for my vindication, for my cause, my God and my Lord! Vindicate me, O LORD, my God, according to your righteousness, and let them not rejoice over me! Let them not say in their hearts, "Aha, our heart's desire!" Let them not say, "We have swallowed him up." Let them be put to shame and disappointed altogether who rejoice at my calamity! Let them be clothed with shame and dishonor who magnify themselves against me!
These questions that are besetting me, the questions of relationships that unsettling, that seem to be fraught with continuous problems and tensions. This should not be, Lord, should it? Especially among those who claim to be seeking a unity in You? Help me, Lord, to see where and how to apply your commandment to love one another, to pour the oil of gladness upon all my relationships.
Malicious witnesses rise up; they ask me of things that I do not know. They repay me evil for good; my soul is bereft. But I, when they were sick-- I wore sackcloth; I afflicted myself with fasting; I prayed with head bowed on my chest. I went about as though I grieved for my friend or my brother; as one who laments his mother, I bowed down in mourning. But at my stumbling they rejoiced and gathered; they gathered together against me; wretches whom I did not know tore at me without ceasing; like profane mockers at a feast, they gnash at me with their teeth.
Lord, there are relationships in my life, some weak and sickly, some damaged, some broken; all needing Your guiding hand. I need to repent to You for my actions and inactions that have caused these situations. I need to seek forgiveness from family and friends where I have caused hurt and disappointment. I need to swallow my pride. This is frightening, help me, Lord Jesus.