Today is a wonderful day! I woke up! My family made it home safely from Branson, I don't have to work, and most importantly, church this morning was.. a blessing!
Since my family was out of town, I went to church with Dan and his family. I don't really know what it is about his church, but unfortunately.. it just doesn't do it for me usually. I don't know if it's the size or I'm just a stick in the mud and I only like my church, haha. But this morning's service was just great! I wish I had better adjectives to describe it!
The songs we sang were some of my absolute most favorite songs! How Deep the Father's Love For Us. The words to that song can preach! "How deep the Father's love for us. How vast beyond all measure. That He would give His only son, to make a wretch His treasure. How great the pain of searing loss. The Father's turns His face away, as wounds which mar the chosen one bring many sons to glory." Almost anyone who has watched me sing at church knows that I have a hard time standing still. I don't want to be a distraction, but I don't understand how people can sing and hear these words and not be moved! The following song was Jesus Paid it All. Lately, I have played and sung this song a lot in my quiet times. The words of this hymn convict me, make me thankful, make me wanna sing out, raise my hands, and praise God for sending His son. Music really touches my heart. Truth-filled lyrics and beautiful music.. it gets me going! I close my eyes and imagine myself sitting at the foot of the throne of God, and I am singing the words to Him. To praise Him, and thank Him, and worship Him, and love Him, and exalt Him. We were sitting down for the first 2 verses of this song, I wanted to stand up so badly, haha. Thankfully we all stood and sang the last verse. "And when before the throne, I stand in Him complete, 'Jesus died my soul to save." My lips shall still repeat." Needless to say, I was truly moved by the songs today.
And the sermon. I'm usually a little skeptical of the sermons at Dan's church.. Their pastor is an amazing speaker who doesn't shy away from difficult truths. But sometimes I feel like he doesn't make the Gospel accessible to non believers or even young believers. He is an extremely educated, inspiring, and spirit-filled man, but I guess the words he uses kinda send the message over my head. But anyway! Today, I was determined to really focus and receive the word of God. And guess what, I did!! Following Jesus Paid it All, the preacher began teaching about God's wrath from Leviticus 20. Paraphrasing his first statement, he said, "a lesser view of sin makes for a lesser view of praise because the price of grace seems cheap." God takes sin very seriously and His wrath can be very great! But that only means that God's grace is even greater! We have to understand that God detests sin, and that His wrath because of it can be huge. But is grace is all-sufficient and can cover any sin. He spoke for a long time about the punishment that God's people received for their sins from the text, and then he said this. "The wrath of God we see here was poured on the head of Christ." On the cross, Jesus truly paid it all. How deep the Father's love for us!
God's wrath is real, and it is mighty, but Christ took is upon himself for us. In this, I must be joyful! I shouldn't live a life of do's and don't's in the name of Christ, but I should live a life of joy and thankfulness. Looking back to the cross, looking forward to Heaven, and praising God all the while.
"For nothing good have I, whereby thy grace to claim. I'll wash my garments white in the blood of Calvary's lamb."