They Point to the Cross (498 words)
One of my greatest joys is simply singing my favorite songs when no one is listening. I have no musical skills and I never sang in a choir. But decades ago, when I longed to play the piano, my kind husband (whose musical skills are even worse than mine) bought us an old player piano. So the next day I drove to a music store hoping I might find some Christian player rolls. Since I was alone in the car, I was happily singing my favorite hymn, "How Great Thou Art!"
When I reached the store, I searched through all the shelves and boxes with hundreds of "player piano" rolls, but there was only one Christian roll left! Guess which one He had saved for me! Yes, it was "How Great Thou Art"! Driving home with this God-given treasure, I sang it louder than ever!
Do you remember that beautiful hymn? Here is the last verse:
And when I think that God, His Son not sparing,
Sent Him to die, I scarce can take it in;
That on the cross, my burden gladly bearing,
He bled and died to take away my sin;
Then sings my soul, my Savior God to Thee:
How great Thou art, how great Thou art! [repeat]
This week, as we again show our gratefulness to our Savior for His agonizing death that saved us from bondage to sin, guilt and hopelessness, a different melody keeps flowing through my mind. It, too, fills my heart with joy from Him. You probably know it. Please sing with me the last two verses of "Beneath the Cross of Jesus." May they touch your heart with His self-giving love:
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!
This hymn was written by Elizabeth Clephane. Born in 1830, she lived in Scotland until her death 39 years later. Her short life was anything but easy, but that didn't quench her joy. In spite of poor health and her parents’ early death, she was full of His love for others. Her friends called her "SUNBEAM." Perhaps they were inspired by her humble words, "I ask no other sunshine than the sunshine of His face."
God had given her the key to a joy with Jesus that nothing could quench! May we, too, live each day with Him! For -
“I am crucified with Christ...and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who…gave Himself for me." Galatians 2:20