Tag Archives: sovereignty in salvation

Just As I Am: Singing to God

It would be hard for me to fully express the role that worship songs- especially hymns, have had in my life. God used the lyrics to “Amazing Grace” to reach me when I was a teenager, finally and reluctantly confessing I was a sinner on my bed at night. Words I never knew existed in my memory bank came rushing back to me from childhood and all at once the word “wretch” struck my heart with tremendous force. I was a wretch, it was true. But the song said God had an interest in saving wretches like me. I didn’t know how yet, or why He could save a wretch like me, but I’m grateful He shone a light in my heart and kept on drawing me.

I had started attending church around that time, and having not grown up in one, witnessing people worship was fascinating to me. It just seemed amazing that people could really sing to God, and the looks on their faces were like they actually knew Him. I still have a poem I wrote as a teenager reflecting on what I experienced during this time they called “worship”:

I stand, swaying just enough
To blend in with the world
As they are wrapped up in their ecstasy.
Shouts of joy bounce off the walls
And I try to reach out;
To catch it without making a statement
Of my obvious attempts.

There are those who wear their love so
Glorious across their faces,
And I would expect them to be proud
Yet they are the meekest.

Often I hear words of great inspiration,
And the thirst deep inside of me pleads
To be filled.

(I smirk every so often, so that the
Stranger next to me won’t know the ways
Of which I have been intrigued)

I walked to the back of the room
Into a corner where no one would see,
And tried to speak a word to God
(To the air?)
My heart raced…
“It’s because you fear God!”
Or is it only for the people who have glanced back?

It’s kind of funny to have this poem as a little reminder of the foreignness and intrigue a “worship service” held for me then. I remember having a sense of the seriousness of singing songs to God. One Sunday morning I was singing a song, something about giving Jesus all of my life. But it wasn’t true. He didn’t have my life, and I knew it full well. I also knew the guy leading worship- a highschool friend, and that Jesus didn’t have his life either. I just remember shutting my mouth mid-song. How could I sing to God words that weren’t true? Words that I didn’t mean? The weight of it felt heavy enough to crush me so I fled, but on the way I asked the worship leader’s mom to send him outside when the singing was over. Continue reading

Astonished By Mercy

That you would shed your blood for me

When I was foulest enemy

And on your back I’d place the cross

For in rebellion I was lost.

 

Willingly I scorned your name

It should be I who bared the shame

Why would you die for sinners cruel

Who despise your reign and rule?

 

Oh dreadful heart, within me beat

And out flowed poison

I could not retreat

From rallying against the Son

For I despised the Holy One.

 

And now that I can see so clear

That is was God who drew me near

When I would beat Him with clasped hands

He fulfilled the laws demands

And was dealt justice in my place

The King of Earth took my disgrace,

What can I say, how can I ever

Express my love

To Him who never

Owed me breath

Or forgiveness sweet

Who took my death

And waits to meet

Me at His throne

I’ll stand alone

Now washed in blood

A precious flood

Dressed in white

And declared right

With God

My God

No words can say

What marvel, and wonder

Is on display

In my heart-

Gasping, silence, song

May say it best

Or in the longing

Of my flesh

To be with you

With all things new

There I will praise

You all my days

For dealing with me

By extending mercy.

 

Glory, glory to the lamb

Who laid down His life for the vile!

Honour, honour to the lamb

For this sinner He reconciled.