“No matter what Sunday, or what is going on in life, I find a hymn we sing that really tunes into where I am that week and provides answers or gives me food for thought.”
I haven’t written and posted for a while, although I have several articles complete. I’ve been letting them ruminate. God’s timetable and mine doesn’t always sync up. God moves me to write and I do. God moves me to post and I will. I don’t feel a need to post on a regular basis, and I know that drives some crazy, but I’ve come to see that everything works on His time, not mine. In the meantime, you can enjoy some hymns from church. Each week I intend to write about a hymn that was sung in church.
No matter what Sunday, or what is going on in life, I find a hymn we sing that really tunes into where I am that week and provides answers or gives me food for thought. I know that there are tons of Christian devotionals out on the market today, but I usually find them unhelpful. I think a lot of these evangelists are into “glam Christianity.”
They have the big smiles and soothing voices, but what they are saying isn’t really filling. It’s like eating a Twinkie or a cream puff. It looks good and tastes good, but it leaves you wanting something more. They also seem to have some “gimmick” verse that goes along with what they are saying. We’ve seen several over the years, and one that I ran across the other day in a resell shop was the “Prayer of Jabez.” They had several of the same copies for adults lined up on a shelf, as well as a whole bunch for the kids. I have a real hang up about these types of books and preaching.
This brings me back to my point here, and that is this: let’s quit with all the hyped stuff, and return to things like the old hymns. They offered a lot of spiritual insight and great messages for all of us. It bothers me that so many churches have taken these out of the service and have substituted “new music.” Now, before I am condemned and told that once these hymns were “new,” I want to say I agree. But look at their messages. They did a study and found that the new gospel music was much more focused on “I and Me,” than just preaching a message. It said there is a focus on “my savior” and what He has done for “me.” The old hymns used bible verses, and were not focused on self, they had a broad message.
The song I picked out this week is Love Found A Way, and the lyrics are as follows.
Wonderful love that rescued me, sunk deep in sin,
Guilty and vile as I could be — no hope within;
When every ray of light had fled, O glorious day!
Raising my soul from out the dead, love found a way.
Love found a way, to redeem my soul,
Love found a way, that could make me whole.
Love sent my Lord to the cross of shame,
Love found a way, O praise His holy Name!
Love brought my Savior here to die on Calvary,
For such a sinful wretch as I, how can it be?
Love bridged the gulf ’twixt me and Heav’n, taught me to pray,
I am redeemed, set free, forgiv’n, love found a way.
Love opened wide the gates of light to Heav’n’s domain,
Where in eternal power and might Jesus shall reign.
Love lifted me from depths of woe to endless day,
There was no help in earth below; love found a way.
In my new teaching position at East Orchard Christian Academy, I get to teach on the Bible for 20-30 minutes each day. We have been in the Book of Romans for a couple of weeks, and I taught again on the concept of sin and our need for redemption. I think I am safe to say that it is hard, especially for kids from 5th-12th grade, college, and even adults to understand this idea of sin. We need God’s grace.
What I find interesting about this song is that it brings the idea of being a “sinful wretch,” which is a strongly worded description, with the idea of love. Love found a way to do all that those lyrics say. Romans, which we just read in class, says that “while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” While we were yet enemies of God, which will be the title to my next article, Christ died for us. Currently, I don’t think we really have a true appreciation of what that means. With social media and 24-hour news coverage, we can usually find people we can compare ourselves to and get the feeling that we aren’t that bad.
I told my class to imagine the worst person they could think of, and then realize that we are/were on the same level as that person. But if you have been saved, God sees you differently. It says in Romans, God imputes to you the covering of Christ’s righteousness. That doesn’t make you righteous but, legally, you are viewed as righteous. That is what makes us able to be viewed as good in God’s eyes. No matter how good we think we are at any given time, we aren’t – only God is good.
If that love hadn’t brought our savior here to die, then we would be held just as guilty as the evilest person you can think of. Thank God that Jesus chose to come down and redeem us, set us free, and forgive us. Love truly found a way, and it was all because of God’s plan of redemption that it happened.
Don’t tell me that God does not love us as a people and has not given us a way out of this mess. You must recognize your position, and accept His lordship over your life. You only have to trust Him.
Grace & Peace to All!