Most of my life I have spent Sunday mornings at church. Over the years I have experienced being deeply moved by musical worship, or found myself significantly affected by a message, or encountered God in a new and fresh way through my connections with the Church community. However, though my experiences at church each week were at times compelling, generally speaking my Sunday morning attendance proved to be a simple practice of reverent submission to the call for fellowship and corporate worship. My general disposition was openness to God and his Truth, but, relative to my experience now, it is as though my life was only connecting loosely to the Gospel; it was like trying to substantially engage ideas that were intangible and theoretical based on my own life experience.
These last two years have been dramatically different.
Pain, suffering, heartache, brokenness, and loss have brought the Truth of the Gospel alive in my heart.
Almost every Sunday, I now find myself emotionally stirred. Every line of every song, every message from God’s Word, every mediation of Truth is no longer abstract; it all carries a huge weight of significance for me now. What was once theoretical is now concrete. What was once suppositional is now real. What was once intangible is now definite. It is the hope on which I have come to stake my very life—it is because He lives that I can face tomorrow!
Because He Lives
How sweet to hold a newborn baby
And feel the pride and joy he gives;
But greater still the calm assurance:
This child can face uncertain days because Christ lives.
Because He lives I can face tomorrow,
Because He lives all fear is gone;
Because I know He holds the future
And life is worth the living just because He lives.
And then one day I’ll cross the river,
I’ll fight life’s final war with pain;
And then, as death gives way to victory,
I’ll see the lights of glory – and I’ll know He lives.
It is songs like this that now penetrate the very core of my being.