We have the wonderful assurance & the unfailing promise that God will never leave us. We can trust that He will always be with us, regardless of our failures. And yet this time of year, specifically the next few days, we mark the time in history when God turned His back on his beloved Son. Even Abraham, as he offered up his son Isaac, had God by his side all the way. In the end, God saved Isaac from death. But Jesus had to bear all the world’s sin himself, without God’s protection & most harshly, without God’s presence. He would not be saved from death.
And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? Matthew 27:46
Jesus had to bear the weight & the wrath of our sin without His Father’s loving hand. He cried out, but no one answered.
It was straight from her lips to my heart.
It wasn’t for the stupid stuff, the little acts of disobedience, the laziness. Those are just symptoms of the real problem.
It was for who I am…that’s what wounded Him. It was for the very essence of what I am, not just what I do, but what I am. That’s why He was wounded & bloodied & beaten to death.
Jesus, can you hear me? I’m in need of a friend.
And I hear you gave me something long ago…
On a hillside hung on a tree, He gave His life for you & me
All for me, He did it all for me
Did they hurt you? Did they laugh at you? Did they beat you, all for me?
But did you fight them? Did you curse them? or did you love them anyway?
All for me, He did it all for me
Do you feel like God’s love can’t reach you today? Are you too far gone? Well, I thought I was…
I wondered, “Is there a love that can cover all of my sin?” I looked around & there He was. Jesus wasn’t up on a throne, sitting with His arms crossed saying, “Poor little Joel”. No, He was down there with me, in the scum & the muck, lifting me up out of the pit & placing me on a solid rock.
The Bible says, “and of His fullness we have all received, & grace for grace”. (John 1:16) What does “grace for grace” mean? I think it means grace on top of grace on top of grace, again & again, forever & ever. Yes, we’re all sinners & we all fall short, but praise God, we are justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Jesus Christ. (Romans 3:23-24) That’s something to sing about. Do you think you’ve exhausted all of His grace? Well, He has more. As a parent, do you ever use up all your patience with your kids? Even then, you have more to give, because your love has no limit. Even when your kids drive you crazy & you don’t think you can handle any more, you always have more to give. Our Father always has more grace to give…
Lord help me to receive the fullness of your grace today, so I can be an instrument of your love & grace to a dying world.
Sun Jan 16 @ Oak Leaf Canton (lead)
Sun Jan 23 @ Oak Leaf HOR (bass)
Sun Feb 6 @ TCAW (lead)
Sat Feb 12 @ SOB (Dolldaze)
Sun Feb 20 @ Oak Leaf HOR (bass)
Sat Feb 26 @ The Loft (Iambic)
Sun Feb 27 @ WRC West (bass)
Sun Mar 6 @ Oak Leaf Canton (lead)
Sun Mar 20 @ Oak Leaf HOR (lead)
Sun Mar 27 @ TCAW (lead)
Sun Apr 10 @ WRC West (lead/bass)
Sat Apr 16 @ Private (acoustic duo)
Sun Apr 17 @ WRC West (lead/bass)
Sun May 1 @ WRC West (lead/bass)
Sat May 7 @ House Concert (Police Academy)
Sun May 8 @ Oak Leaf Canton (lead/acoustic)
Fri May 13 @ The Loft (Iambic)
Sun May 15 @ TCAW (lead/acoustic)
Sun June 12 @ Oak Leaf Canton (lead/acoustic)
Sat June 18 @ June Fest (Iambic)
Sun June 19 @ Oak Leaf HOR (lead/acoustic)
Sun July 24 @ Oak Leaf HOR (lead/acoustic)