By now we are all familiar with the metaphor of a “shepherd”. We call ourselves “shepherds” and encourage one another to “lead our flock”. More than perhaps any other, Jesus uses the vocation of sheep-herding as reference for what He does for us and how He treats us.
We sing, “Jesus, center my life on Your name,” a cry that remembers the miserable slavery of self-love and begs God to turn us from the lesser lights of success, beauty, wealth, fame, comfort, and fleeting happiness.
We sing, “Everything and nothing less, forever,” with the hope that God will soon make these words true. We ask Him to hasten the day when we are gathered around His throne, faithful to give Him all of who we are and all that we have for eternity.
“Thanks for leading me into the throne room” might be something you have heard before, or even said to someone else…but it isn’t biblically correct.
Something that the Lord has been teaching me recently is this: s a worship leader, I can’t make myself, my audience, or anyone actually worship.
Who is the root and center of our trust? Through it all, it’s Jesus. From the day God gave us faith on, our entire ability to praise and honor God is dependent on Him giving us that ability. Having Christ in us is the only hope of glory in this life and in the one to come.
We Christians are a people who live this life with a great hope, and when we sing “It Is Well” we not only remember our hope, we are compelled to live in light of it.
When we sing these precious lyrics, we reflect on His promise that no attack, scheme, or effort from Satan can ever disrupt our standing as a child of God. We sing these words not only to praise God for His goodness, but to remember it and be comforted by it, and so we do so with exuberance!
Telling God we need Him expresses the truth that there is not one part of existence that does not fall under God’s absolute sovereignty, not even our own breath, our own fulfillment, or our own joy. The truth is we need Jesus in more ways than we can name. We need the Spirit to abide in us, create in us faith, counsel us, and comfort us with the true security of Jesus. We need Him to help us love Him and love one another. We need Him to give us our next breath. We need Him to be powerful in our weakness. We need Him to help us believe when doubts try to choke out truth. We need Him when we are afraid, alone, angry, jealous, or power-hungry.
Our greatest need was indeed answered by the Father’s love, and that’s why we sing this song. As somber as it is regarding our part in Jesus’ crucifixion, it brings us to express and encourage the response Jesus’s sacrifice deserves: pure and utter joy that “His wounds have paid [our] ransom.”