May 1, 2011
Just had to get down some of my Sunday morning church thoughts. First of all I stand amazed at God. At the way He answers prayers, ordains things for His glory, for how He places people in our lives, in the many ways He moves through His children. Overwhelmed and in Total Awe of God, Peace and Truth and Righteousness, Praise, Honesty, Confession, Forgiveness, Grace, the Power of Prayer, Trust, Conviction, Laughter, Tears, Hugs, Friends, Eternity, Mortality, Salvation. All in a matter of 90 minutes. And to think I was going to stay home in my PJ's and cry over spilt milk.
None of the stories are mine to tell, but oh how I was blessed to be in the midst of God working this morning in that sanctuary. The power of removing our Sunday morning masks and being real in front of each other~ isn't that what a group of believers is all about? To carry each others burdens, to lift up prayers begging for grace and wisdom and the ability to trust God in His sovereignty, embracing each other when we are struggling, forgiveness when we have sinned, sharpening each other with the Word, laughing together, encouraging each other, saying goodbye as others are standing next to the edge of eternity and preparing to meet God. I love those people and what God is doing in their midst.
As believers do we even have a glimpse of what the cross cost? As Blaine prayed that before taking communion this morning it made me stop and consider the last two months in our lives. It is so easy to talk about God and Jesus and a wooden cross a couple of thousand years ago. But do we even have a clue? To feel the pain of loss that we are feeling now I don't think many of us even begin to understand what salvation cost, myself included.
I have been pondering the cross from God's side the last few days. Trying to imagine the perfect harmony of the relationship of the trinity and then to have that broken as the Son left heaven to enter a fallen, sinful world. Was there not the pain of loss there, even for God? In God's perfect sovereignty over salvation He Himself had to endure the loss of His own Son. And to consider the pain of turning His back on Jesus on that cross when our sins were laid on Him~ could you even begin to imagine turning your back on your own son in the moment of His greatest need? Although we feel the loss of Trent, God never asked us to turn our back on him like He had to on His own Son. It is too much to even comprehend.
Do we really believe that should have been us on that cross rather than Jesus? How many times do we mouth that? Who really thinks his own depravity is actually worthy of being hung from a cross? We have accepted the rewards of salvation without considering the cost of salvation. An easy salvation would not be worth obedience, or worth offering our own lives in response. Is the reason we minimize obedience because we have minimized what salvation cost? What about the joy of suffering with/for Jesus? Jesus suffered for the joy set before Him. He did not go to that cross because He loved us all so much, Scripture says He went to the cross out of obedience to His Father first. Let's split a few hairs here. If we think Jesus died a horrific death out of love for a fallen creation than salvation is all about us. But scripture says that everything is all about Gods glory and He will not share that glory with anyone or anything. Out of obedience Jesus submitted Himself to the will of the Father. It makes a difference when we talk about What Would Jesus Do if we don't know why Jesus did what He did. If Jesus is really the example in a believers life than the believer should strive all the more to be obedient to God through what Scripture says because that is what Jesus modeled~ submission and obedience.
And how about the issue of sovereignty~ Why is it so hard to allow God his Sovereignty? It's easy in the "good" things, but how about in the hard things? Freedom is found in simply acknowledging God's complete sovereignty and trusting Him for whatever He will do. We do not have to understand it to accept it. God said it, who are we to argue with His wisdom? Do we really think we know better than the creator of the universe? The God who knows how many hairs are on your head as well as how many tears you have ever cried can take care of all the other details as well. Joy is found in simply trusting and believing Him, for what He has already done and for what He will do. He is the potter, we are the clay.
All these things continually run through my brain. No wonder God ordained that we will spend an eternity with Him~ it will take that long to reveal how amazing He is. Every day He will show Himself to only be better than the day before. It is the glory of God to conceal a matter, it is the honor of kings to search it out. Aahh, sweet Sundays, they come once every seven days.