“I, the Lord, have grasped you by the hand. To open the eyes of the blind, to bring prisoners out of confinement.” Isaiah 42:6-7
A song based on some of St. Paul’s writings that I fondly remember singing in college went like this, “For we are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation. Once no people, now God’s people, proclaiming his marvelous works.” Consider a world where every person was continually praising the wonderful works of God. I challenge you to make that one of the core aims of your life. Make it your daily passion to proclaim to the world just how good God is in the works that he has done for us. Give up the complaining, sarcasm, bitterness and negativity in exchange for speaking about the life, compassion and almighty power God gives us freely at all times.
If someone asked you the question, “What is THE work of God?”, how would you respond? “THE work of God is the forgiveness of sins, Jesus came to forgive our sins so that we could have the opportunity to be friends again with God and live with him forever in heaven.” Not knowing we are forgiven and invited to heaven leads us into no mans land. God wants us to know with certitude that we were once no people but now, through the forgiveness of sins, we are his people. God desires to transform us from being no people to being God’s people. Jesus is the power for this transformation when he grasps us by the hand and shows us the constant love and forgiveness of God. Without an experience of being forgiven and loved by God, we believe ourselves to be nothing. With that same experience, we know we are precious in God’s sight and beyond any price.
“Opportunity” is a key word in terms of whether we are feeling like a “nobody” or someone who is cherished beyond all words. How much have we taken the opportunity to let Jesus grasp us by the hand and show us God’s love and forgiveness? It is always there and I wonder how many seconds each day we are cognizant of it. Open yourself to Jesus for forgiveness and love all the time in order to be fully transformed into God’s people. God’s people know they are loved and forgiven. This love and forgiveness is a fire that will be seen, heard and felt by others.
Do you have the fire? Has Jesus grasped your hand so that you cannot help but speak how marvelously he has opened your blind eyes and set your free from the prison of your sin? You are part of a chosen race, royal priesthood and holy nation. People who belong to the chosen race, royal priesthood and holy nation are on fire with the love and forgiveness of Christ. That is the definition of a member.
Think about what parents do for their children when they are at a busy intersection or crossing the road. They grasp their children’s hands to protect their physical safety. This is right and extremely important but we know that the most important kind of safety is spiritual safety. We have got to grasp other people’s hands and lead them to the land of God’s forgiveness. We are to provide others with the safety of God’s everlasting love and forgiveness. Are you a good provider? you can’t give what you do not have. The way you can tell you have it is if you are on fire.
Provide eternal safety!