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Month: April 2015

And Then Sunday Dawned!

And Then Sunday Dawned!

As our church choir has prepared for our resurrection Sunday service we have rehearsed, practiced, prepared a service all about the resurrection of Christ through songs.  There is one song, since the very first time we sang this song it was my favorite.  The words are incredibly powerful and I fell in love with this song from the start.

The beginning of the song starts out saying, “Hear the heart of heaven beating, ‘Jesus Saves’ and the hush of mercy breathing, ‘Jesus Saves'”!

The first time I listened to those words I just imagined the host of angels in Heaven saying, “Please accept Him as your Savior!  Please!” they plead.  Can you almost hear it?  Just accept Him!!

Later on in the song another verse says, “He will die our burden bearing. Jesus saves. Jesus saves. ‘It is done!’ will shout the cross, ‘Christ has paid redemption’s cost!”

Are you ready for this next part?  This, yes, THIS is what Easter {or Resurrection Sunday as I like to refer to it} is ALL about!  It says,

“While the EMPTY TOMB’S declaring, ‘JESUS SAVES!!'”

Hallelujah!!!  He AROSE!  THIS is the reason we celebrate!

Jesus Christ conquered the GRAVE, overcame DEATH!  Yes, MY Savior LIVES!

I am moved to tears when I ponder the love expressed to the world, to me!  He died so that we ALL could have salvation through HIM!

The song continues, “Freedom’s calling, chains are falling, hope is dawning bright and true.  Day is breaking, night is quaking.  God is making all things new.  Jesus Saves!!”

Oh my friend, do you know that freedom? Have your chains fallen off?  Has Christ made you NEW?  Oh He wants to!  He longs to!  The heart of Heaven is beckoning out to YOU!  Receive Him!  Claim Him as your Savior!!

Romans 3:23 says,

“For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; “

Then Romans 6:23 states,

“For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. “

There is hope!  There is a free gift just waiting for YOU! Ephesians 2:8-9 declares,

For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.

Oh friend, I am so thankful to serve a RISEN Savior! I am SO thankful that He is still saving souls!  Let TODAY be the day YOU accept Him as your Savior if you have not already done so!

There is plenty of reason to rejoice my friend, Christ is ALIVE!!

The Silence of Saturday

The Silence of Saturday

It’s dark and rainy out today.   There is no coincidence about that.  Satan is aware that millions of Christians around the world are in a state of remembrance of what this time in the year represents for them.  Satan is not thrilled that the attention is where it ought always be, on Christ. He is bothered by the fact that on this morning our church family will gather and then disperse to pass out information about our church to our community.  Inviting them not just to our church but ultimately hopefully and prayerfully leading them to our Christ as Savior.

Yes, Satan is bothered on this day.

As I ponder in my own thoughts this day and what it must have been like two thousand years ago I wonder what it was like.  Did some rejoice and throw parties?  After all, they felt they had won.  They knew Christ had died and they knew exactly where His precious body had been laid. Did some still weep?  Were others full of confusion?  Were even more praying and hoping thinking, “Come on Jesus, rise again!! I have faith you can do it!  Show them You really are GOD!”

As I think about the day before, on the day He was crucified, my heart’s cry during the mockery is, “Jesus, show them prove to them the God I know you are!!”  Yet, if He had done that, we would all be lost for eternity.  Listen to this quote by Preacher Adrian Rogers:

“If Jesus had taken up His own defense with the intention of refuting His accusers and proving His innocence, He would have won.  But we would have lost, and we would be lost for all eternity.”

Yes, His thoughts are so much higher than my own. His plans are bigger than mine.  He knew this had to happen.

So they laid Him in a tomb.  Kind, gracious Joseph of Arimathea had a fresh clean tomb ready for His Savior. I imagine Joseph knew it was only for a few days Christ would need it. They laid Christ’s body to rest and on the Sabbath it was quiet.  I imagine there were many tears shed but slivers of hope were deep in their heart.  Soldiers rolled a giant stone in front of the tomb to keep people out and attempting to keep Christ in, and then they stood guard.  Then they waited.

Yes, Saturday was silent, but SUNDAY was coming!!

Sunday is Coming!!

Sunday is Coming!!

She carried her baby in her womb, probably thinking things that many women do not think about when they are ready to have a baby.  When a woman is expecting, as that ninth month approaches she begins to really anticipate the birth of her baby.

This Mama was different.  The longer she kept her baby in her womb, maybe she felt she could protect her baby from what was inevitable.  From the very reason He was coming.

Her day to deliver came and I wonder if as she cradled her baby in her arms, as she traced His little fingers with her own, did she plead with the Father for there to be another way?  Oh, she knew this precious babe had come to fulfill one purpose, to bring salvation to a world full of sinful people, yet she also knew His end on earth would be cruel and heartbreaking.  The day He was born the countdown to His death had begun.

I wonder if she desired perfection more from others because maybe she thought if we all sinned less than that would be one less sin He would have to bear.  This Son whom she was raising, the Son of man who was also her Savior.

Fast forward 33 years.  Now she knelt at the foot of His cross, she knew this day was coming but the pain in her heart could not even be compared to what she thought it would feel like.  Her heart, oh the ache, the pain in her heart.  She knew He was the Son of God.  She knew He did not belong in this world. Yet He had been mothered by her.  She taught Him how to walk, kissed his owies, hugged Him tightly, she raised Him from boyhood to a man and she knew from the beginning this would happen.  His death though, it was a pain most unbearable for a mother’s heart.   Maybe as she wept it became more and more difficult to look up at Him because all she saw was the writhing pain and agony He was in.

On this day 2000 years ago it was a dark dark day.  The day we, the entire race of humanity, crucified our Savior.  We mocked, we beat, we ridiculed, we fought over His garments, we hung Him on a cross to be crucified because we rejected the Truth He spoke.  We didn’t like what He was saying because when He spoke it cut through to our very core and brought conviction like we had never known before.  {Sounds like how we are today doesn’t it?}

The love displayed at the cross is a love I have never been able to grasp!  Taking all that we put Him through and what did He say? “Father forgive them.” ~Luke 23:34  We tortured Him and He gave us LOVE.  He bore the cross because He loved us just that much!

Has the Gospel changed us?  Has this sacrifice changed us at all?  Some have accepted the gift of salvation, but not much has changed.  The reality of the depth of the love displayed at Calvary is unspeakable and oftentimes we take it for granted!

Some reject out right and never accept Him as Savior.  Some accept Him as their Savior but it hasn’t really changed them!  Sometimes we pat ourselves on the back for showing up to church on Sunday morning because it eases our conscience.  It makes us feel like a “good” Christian because we have done “our” part and even feel at times it is a “great” sacrifice that we even went to hear about our Savior on Sunday morning.  If that is how we feel, the Gospel has not truly changed us.

Then there are those, those that are actually living the normal Christian life!  They are often times looked at as fanatics, but our view is the one that is distorted!  There are Christians who are on fire for Christ!  They are eager to serve, to give, to worship Christ because He has changed them!  They can’t wait to tell others about the Good News of the Gospel because for them the Gospel changes everything!!   I long to be like those people!

On this day a few thousand years ago Christ gave us the most precious gift of all when He died on that rugged cross.  He gave us the free gift of salvation if we would only choose to accept it!

I PRAISE GOD that the story does not end the day He died.  The very reason we celebrate the Resurrection is because He rose again!! Conquering death and the grave!!  He gave Himself to die, but SUNDAY WAS COMING!  Hallelujah!!

So now I ask, has the Gospel changed you?  Have you accepted the free gift of salvation?  May today be the day of your salvation!!  May today be the day we who claim the name of Christ truly let what Christ has done for us change us from the inside out!!  Let the Gospel change everything for you today!!