I love the sound of Phillips, Craig and Dean. It is one of the advantages of attending Gateway – a free concert with friends. I was in anticipation to hear new music and old favorites. Prior to the beginning of the concert we heard about a ministry they support. As I watched a clip of film I was humbled. The Jesus film was being showed to a tribe in the Congo in their own language. The audience was filled mostly with children, or maybe I just noticed them more since they were up front and the adults were further in the back.
This was most likely the first film they had ever seen. Yet what struck me the most? Their faces as they watched the life of Jesus acted out according to scripture in a way they could understand. There was joy and happiness on their faces as Jesus spoke of love, and healed the sick and blind. You could hear their pleasure. The joy faded as they watched Jesus’ trial and beatings. As Jesus carried the cross, the gasps of shock and sorrow tore through them. As the nails were pounded into his hands and feet they cried and anguish was evident in their faces. Tears ran down their cheeks and they shouted in horror. Their hearts were broken for the man they came to love and followed. Then it happened…the Resurrection! The crowd shouted for joy! The faces of the children were so happy. With tear stained faces they shouted with joy! HE’S ALIVE!
As I watched the tears welled in my eyes…when was the last time I jumped and shouted for joy as I read of someone being healed? When was the last time I cried in anguish as I read how they crucified my Savior? When was the last time I fell to my knees as I read of His great love for me?
I remember the moment when I asked Jesus into my heart. The sweet peace that flowed up from my feet through my body as the poison of my life was pushed out. I was sixteen and my life was a mess. I was headed in the wrong direction and avoided Jesus like the plague. I thought He just wanted to mess with my plans. As I listened to Dave Wilkerson talk about Jesus in a language I could understand, my heart started pounding. I was one of the first down the aisle when the altar call was given. Jesus wasn’t a grumpy old man, He was a healer and He was alive!
I don’t want to lose the joy of my salvation. I want to read the word just for the sheer pleasure of it, without trying to analyze every little verse. I want to be like David when he danced in the street as they carried the Ark of the Covenant back to Jerusalem. I want to remember why I asked Jesus into my heart that night so long ago at Melody land in Anaheim, California. The night I discovered Jesus was better than drugs, alcohol and parties.
The cry of my heart…”Oh give me back my joy again; you have broken me – now let me rejoice.” Psalm 51:8
Have you forgotten the joy of your salvation? Has the stuff of life snuffed out your joy? Then cry out with David, “Restore to me the joy of my salvation…”. Read Psalm 51 as a prayer to your Father who wants to restore your joy. He savors the moment you asked Him into your life and He can’t wait to take you back into his arms and welcome you home.
I found myself in my early 50′s shattered, divorced and without a job – moving to a new state to begin over again. There were times I thought the “start would stop me.” I had no clue what my purpose was and quite frankly thought I had messed up so bad that even God couldn’t put my life back together again. Within the last 6 years I started a new career, enjoyed being single, became a grandmother, reconnected with my family and at 57 I married the most amazing man ever. Because God never does anything small, He asks me to step out of my box and begin writing. Only God….if He did this for me, He will do it for you. Join us on the journey to discover Your Purpose Now. -Karen