Many of you know I write a blog for Kinship Christian Radio. You may have also noticed I was not in chat last Thursday. The blog post below is why. (It won't be posted until next week but I wanted to post it now.) This is for those of you struggling with sin and addiction.
…and standing behind him at his feet, weeping, she began to wet his feet with her tears and wiped them with the hair of her head and kissed his feet and anointed them with the ointment. (Luke 7:38 ESV)
I recently attended the Minnesota Teen and Adult Challenge Gala in Mankato. The organization runs an addiction recovery program and the Gala is a fundraiser for them. One of the features of the event is singing by the MnT&AC Choir.
As the 150 members of the choir took the stage, it was obvious a lot of these people had lived some pretty rough lives. Indeed, as the crowd listened to their testimonies, it was clear some had made a virtual career of being in and out of the court system from a very young age. Many of the people before me had been sentenced by that very court system to participate in the program as a very last chance to turn their lives around.
As they sang “Amazing Grace” I could not help noticing their faces.
How sweet the sound
That saved a wretch like me
I once was lost, but now I'm found.
Yes, hands were raised in praise, but many of them were crying.
My chains are gone
I've been set free
My God, my Savior has ransomed me
And like a flood His mercy rains
One young red-haired lady, who was standing more or less in front of me in the second row, was shedding many tears as she sang.
And I could see on her face such praise and gratitude as I had never seen on anyone’s face before. In those tears, I could see how far she had fallen and how far Jesus had lifted her. I could see a deep, deep love in those tears—both her love for God and Jesus’ love for her. There was worship in those tears for giving hope to a life that had no hope at all.
Her chains were gone. She had truly been set free. And her tears spoke praise louder than the 150 voices before me.
And I no longer saw a bunch of drug addicts and criminals before me.
I saw 150 children of an amazing, loving God who was willing to die for each and every one of us to heal us and save us and make us heirs of His very own kingdom.
And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. (John 1:14 ESV)