What Wondrous Love Is This?

While singing the hymn “What Wondrous Love Is This” in church yesterday I was extremely moved by the truth of the Gospel.  The words “When I was sinking down beneath God’s righteous frown, Christ laid aside His crown for my soul” seemed to pierce my heart in a new way.

In my sin I was “sinking down” to a place of eternal destruction and God, in His great mercy, reached into my life and saved me!  Sadly I can easily go through my day without this reality in the forefront of my mind.

Thank you Lord for your grace and mercy that brings sinners such as I to repentance and new life in you!

“What wondrous love is this, O my soul, O my soul!
What wondrous love is this, O my soul!
What wondrous love is this that caused the Lord of bliss
To bear the dreadful curse for my soul, for my soul,
To bear the dreadful curse for my soul.

When I was sinking down, sinking down, sinking down,
When I was sinking down, sinking down,
When I was sinking down beneath God’s righteous frown,
Christ laid aside His crown for my soul, for my soul,
Christ laid aside His crown for my soul.

To God and to the Lamb, I will sing, I will sing;
To God and to the Lamb, I will sing.
To God and to the Lamb Who is the great “I Am”;
While millions join the theme, I will sing, I will sing;
While millions join the theme, I will sing.

And when from death I’m free, I’ll sing on, I’ll sing on;
And when from death I’m free, I’ll sing on.
And when from death I’m free, I’ll sing and joyful be;
And through eternity, I’ll sing on, I’ll sing on;
And through eternity, I’ll sing on.”

William Walker

Chronic Fatigue + Desire For Organization = Sanctification

I have a burning desire to be organized.  Unfortunately my body doesn’t cooperate and I do well to accomplish the basics (laundry, cooking dinner and maybe a clean bathroom every few weeks).  Lately I’ve let this frustration take hold of me all too often.  I sinfully allow my desire for order in my home to become an idol and find myself anxiety ridden and frustrated even though I don’t have the energy to accomplish more than I’m doing.  Lord, help me to be controlled by your desires and not my own and to find contentment in you.

Today I am taking comfort in the words of this hymn by Frances Havergal – thank you Lord for your perfect peace!

Like a River Glorious

“Like a river glorious is God’s perfect peace, over all victorious in its bright increase: perfect, yet it floweth fuller every day, perfect, yet it groweth deeper all the way.

Hidden in the hollow of his blessed hand, never foe can follow, never traitor stand; not a surge of worry, not a shade of care, not a blast of hurry touch the spirit there.

Every joy or trial falleth from above, traced upon our dial by the Sun of Love; we may trust him fully all for us to do; they who trust him wholly find him wholly true.

Stayed upon Jehovah, hearts are fully blessed, finding as he promised, perfect peace and rest.”

What Wondrous Love Is This!

As I was listening to this hymn tonight I was humbled by Christ’s unfathomable love.

The phrase “Christ laid aside His crown for my soul” moved me as I was reminded that God loved me so much that He sent His Son to die for me. He suffered greatly on my behalf so that I might live with Him one day. I deserved the brutal death that he experienced but because of His grace I will never know suffering like that.

Hebrews 9:27-28 Just as man is destined to die once, and after that to face judgment, so Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many people; and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him.”

1 John 4:10 This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.”

Prone to wander, Lord I feel it!

While folding laundry tonight, after a difficult day, due to an almost sleepless night, these familiar words (from the hymn “Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing”) came to mind: “Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it, prone to leave the God I love!”

It’s humbling to me just how easily my thoughts and emotions can wander as a result of my circumstances. The rest of the verse is my prayer today, “Here’s my heart, O, take and seal it; seal it for thy courts above.”

“Come, Thou Fount of every blessing,
Tune my heart to sing Thy grace;
Streams of mercy, never ceasing,
Call for songs of loudest praise.
Teach me some melodious sonnet,
Sung by flaming tongues above.
Praise the mount! I’m fixed upon it,
Mount of Thy redeeming love.

Sorrowing I shall be in spirit,
Till released from flesh and sin,
Yet from what I do inherit,
Here Thy praises I’ll begin;
Here I raise my Ebenezer;
Here by Thy great help I’ve come;
And I hope, by Thy good pleasure,
Safely to arrive at home.

Jesus sought me when a stranger,
Wandering from the fold of God;
He, to rescue me from danger,
Interposed His precious blood;
How His kindness yet pursues me
Mortal tongue can never tell,
Clothed in flesh, till death shall loose me
I cannot proclaim it well.

O to grace how great a debtor
Daily I’m constrained to be!
Let Thy goodness, like a fetter,
Bind my wandering heart to Thee.
Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it,
Prone to leave the God I love;
Here’s my heart, O take and seal it,
Seal it for Thy courts above.

O that day when freed from sinning,
I shall see Thy lovely face;
Clothed then in blood washed linen
How I’ll sing Thy sovereign grace;
Come, my Lord, no longer tarry,
Take my ransomed soul away;
Send thine angels now to carry
Me to realms of endless day.”

Robert Robinson – 1758

“How Firm a Foundation”

This hymn, auther unknown, is so powerful. The last 5 stanza’s are written so that the Lord is actually speaking to his children. Dwell on these wonderful words of comfort today and know that no matter what you’re going through, if you will trust in Him, he’ll never forsake!

How firm a foundation you saints of the Lord, is laid for your faith in his excellent Word! What more can he say than to you he has said, to you who for refuge to Jesus have fled?

Fear not, I am with you, O be not dismayed; for I am your God and will still give you aid; I’ll strengthen you, help you, and cause you to stand, upheld by my righteous, omnipotent hand.

When through the deep waters I call you to go, the rivers of sorrow shall not overflow; for I will be with you, your troubles to bless, and sanctify to you your deepest distress.

When through fiery trials your pathway shall lie, my grace, all-sufficient, shall be your supply; the flame shall not hurt you; I only design your dross to consume and your gold to refine.

E’en down to old age all my people shall prove my sovereign, eternal, unchangeable love; and when hoary hairs shall their temples adorn, like lambs they shall still in my bosom be borne.

The soul that on Jesus has leaned for repose, I will not, I will not desert to his foes; that soul, though all hell should endeavor to shake, I’ll never, no never, no never forsake.”

Beneath the Cross of Jesus

I love the hymn “Beneath the Cross of Jesus.” It wasn’t until recently that I learned about the hymns author, Elizabeth C. Clephane (1830-1869). Clephane, a Scottish hymn writer, was continuously challenged by physical weakness. Despite her frailty she lived in the joy of the Lord and was so joyful that she was known throughout her community as “The Sunbeam.”

“Beneath the cross of Jesus I fain would take my stand,
The shadow of a mighty rock within a weary land;
A home within the wilderness, a rest upon the way,
From the burning of the noontide heat, and the burden of the day.

O safe and happy shelter, O refuge tried and sweet,
O trysting place where Heaven’s love and Heaven’s justice meet!
As to the holy patriarch that wondrous dream was given,
So seems my Savior’s cross to me, a ladder up to heaven.

There lies beneath its shadow but on the further side
The darkness of an awful grave that gapes both deep and wide
And there between us stands the cross two arms outstretched to save
A watchman set to guard the way from that eternal grave.

Upon that cross of Jesus mine eye at times can see
The very dying form of One Who suffered there for me;
And from my stricken heart with tears two wonders I confess;
The wonders of redeeming love and my unworthiness.

I take, O cross, thy shadow for my abiding place;
I ask no other sunshine than the sunshine of His face;
Content to let the world go by to know no gain or loss,
My sinful self my only shame, my glory all the cross.”

–Elizabeth Clephane 1868