Over the past few weeks Jaime Jamgochian's rendition of the song "The Stand" has been played quite frequently over the local radio station I listen to. I've loved that song from the first moment I heard it years ago by Michael W. Smith. It never fails to move me.
The song is based on Romans 5:1-3. Earlier today, I read this passage in a couple of different versions of the Bible. I love how The Message says this:
By entering through faith into what God has always wanted to do for us--set us right with him, make us fit for him--we have it all together with God because of our Master Jesus. And that's not all: We throw open our doors to God and discover at the same moment that he has already thrown open his door to us. We find ourselves standing where we always hoped we might stand--out in the wide open spaces of God's grace and glory, standing tall and shouting our praise.
There's more to come: We continue to shout our praise even when we're hemmed in with troubles, because we know how troubles can develop passionate patience in us, and how that patience in turn forges the tempered steel of virtue, keeping us alert for whatever God will do next. In alert expectancy such as this, we're never left feeling shortchanged. Quite the contrary--we can't round up enough containers to hold everything God generously pours into our lives through the Holy Spirit! Romans 5:1-5 (MSG)
Imagine yourself standing in a wide open space. This is easy for me to do for I live on the edge of the American Great Plains, LOL! Use your imagination! Now, with your arms spread open wide, slowly turn in a circle. Oops... that's not big enough. Zoom out some more. Do it again. Nope, that is not big enough. Zoom out some more, and then some more and some more. You can't see yourself anymore? Good! Now zoom out some more and some more and some more. Don't stop yet for you have not yet reached the limit of God's grace and glory. Are you mumbling that it is impossible to do so? You are right but don't mumble it, declare it, shout it out and embrace that truth! Make sure the enemy hears it loud and clear! Stand tall and let your praises flow for you are standing in the midst of God's grace and glory!
We are not a defeated people nor are we slaves. It is time to quit acting like it! We belong to HIM! We are adopted by HIM! We are saved by the precious blood of Jesus Christ which was shed for us as a result of God's love, mercy and grace toward us! We are HIS very own princes and and we need to remember that, no matter what!
Many of us are fighting fierce battles. I recognize that, however I also see many of us focusing on the battle we are in so much that we don't move forward. We are so busy waiting for the miracle to take place that we come to a standstill. I do not believe this pleases God.
The Apostle Paul wanted to take the Gospel to Caesar himself. He eventually did so but it was in chains after waiting years to do so. During the time of imprisonment he wrote, amongst other things, the letter to the church at Philippi which we know as Philippians. When you read it, remember the circumstances Paul was enduring and what his response to those circumstances were. Now I want you to know, brothers and sisters,that what has happened to me has actually served to advance the gospel. As a result, it has become clear throughout the whole palace guard and to everyone else that I am in chains for Christ. And because of my chains, most of the brothers and sisters have become confident in the Lord and dare all the more to proclaim the gospel without fear. Philippians 1:12-14 (NIV)
Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Philippians 4:4 (NIV)
I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength. Philippians 4:12-13 (NIV)
I want to stand with my arms wide and heart abandoned before God regardless of my circumstances...without any reservations... no matter what. How about you?
Photo Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/tonythemisfit/4762010849/
[quote] Oops... that's not big enough. Zoom out some more. Do it again. Nope, that is not big enough. Zoom out some more, and then some more and some more. You can't see yourself anymore? Good! Now zoom out some more and some more and some more. Don't stop yet for you have not yet reached the limit of God's grace and glory[/quote]
All I can say to this is 'AMEN'! We have a God who is waiting to give us so much out of the abundance of his heart. We are truly blessed.