“Sing out your praises to our God, our King. Yes, sing your highest praises to our King, the King of all the earth. Sing thoughtful praises!” (Psalm 47:6-7 Living Bible)
In my resolution to make no resolutions in 2016, I embarked instead on a mission to ask myself, and sincerely examine, vital faith questions. My March 3, 2016, FYI article entitled “Question #1” centered around the idea that if “I am the Inn Jesus wants to be born in… am I making a room ready and available to welcome Him continually?” I continue to ask myself that question regularly. So, here comes question # 2…
Recently I was stunned by my reaction as I read an old hymn in the red Covenant Hymnal:
I stand amazed in the presence of Jesus the Nazarene And wonder how He could save me, a sinner, condemned, unclean…
A stunning reaction that became question #2.
DO I? DO I TRULY STAND AMAZED?!
The familiarity of that hymn was what I expected to feel — the comfort of simply knowing the words with the melody playing in my mind. But then it struck! I was standing in the presence of Jesus! A true and clear “Oh my God!” hit me squarely where I sat in my comfy chair. Life may become routine, even mundane, but the fact these words, this Gift, vastly exceeds anything in my daily life astounded me again.
So, I stopped there and literally stood up into the presence of Jesus and asked Him to flood me once again with Grace… to erase the usual, the ordinary, and gift me with WONDER and let me MARVEL in Him and His presence. Psalm 46:10a (TLB) commands me, “Stand silent! Know that I am God!” And all I can offer in response is, “Yes, Lord Jesus. Lift me, hold me, heal me, with your gift of Grace.”
It was then I realized just how intensely personal the words of this hymn are. They are meant to be MY personal testimony. He chose to save me! Knowing the story in the Bible tells me the “how” of what God did. The WONDER and MARVEL enter as I choose to accept that the Gift is for me. In my sin, and facing my death, He called MY name! He rescued me! Author Liz Curtis Higgs, in her blog post of July 16, 2015, paraphrases Psalm 47:4 as “The One who names the stars calls you by name and calls you His.” Wow!
So, I stand saved and amazed right here, right now, in the midst of my every day. He desires that for me every day. He seeks fellowship and interaction with me. Through all my ups and downs and ins and outs, He is there. He longs to be the first greeting of my day and my last prayer at night. Francine Rivers says in her blog post Old Testament Lessons: “From the beginning, God created us for a deep, abiding, intimate, everlasting relationship with Him.” He is always eager and waiting for me to enter His presence and just BE with Him.
And the chorus resounds:
How marvelous! How wonderful! And my song shall ever be: How marvelous! How wonderful! Is my Savior’s love for me!
What a marvel! How wonder filled! I can and I am standing in amazement under God and Grace! Take this moment and join me?
Love and Joy! Char
Char can be reached via email here. The featured image is page 419 of The Covenant Hymnal (red).