Friday, April 13, 2012

Because He Lives...

Hunter went down for his afternoon nap a little early today, affording me the luxury of a little alone time. I grabbed a granny smith, my Bible, workbook, and a pen and headed to a sunny spot by the window. Sadie curled up next to me as I cracked open my dog-eared workbook to the final few pages and began to read. They were the final pages of a seven-week study that some girlfriends and I embarked on two short months ago. The study focused on the life and writings of James, the half-brother of Jesus. It was a study that shook me to my core, and profoundly impacted my relationship with the Lord.

            As I filled in the blanks, read through the notes, and flipped through the tissue paper pages of my Bible…my heart raced at the thought of completing the study. That old familiar feeling crept up like on the last day of school before summer break…exams complete, papers handed in, books returned to the library…bittersweet melancholy. Excited at the accomplishment, saddened at the finality of it all.

            I have been a follower of Christ since I was four years old, and yet I have learned more about the founding fathers of my faith in the last few weeks than in the last 18 years. As I filled in a timeline of the events that took place in the decades following the death and resurrection of Christ, I got goosebumps. These were real men who wrote those New Testament books…they knew Jesus as a friend and brother…they stumbled and fell like the rest of us…they sinned…they were forgiven…and they were murdered for their faith. Murdered.

            It makes me wonder which side of the street I would have stood if I lived 2000 years ago. Would I have been a follower of the Lord and lived in the danger which following Christ entailed? Or would I have claimed this world as my home and played it “safe”? The thought makes me shudder a little. I have faced general ridicule for my beliefs, but never imminent danger (much less death) for them.

            Anyway, I digress…what I really wanted to record on this page is how I have been changed by the teaching of James. He has an annoying and effective way of stirring up hearts to feel conviction. I have never before felt so acutely aware of my sin, or the frequency in which I sin, as I do now. I am amazed that God continues to love me and consider me His kid, when I am so so so unworthy.

            As I closed up my books today, stashed them on the coffee table and walked upstairs to dry my hair, my mind raced with thoughts of my own inadequacy. As I turned on the hairdryer, an old familiar hymn came humming out of my closed mouth, without me even realizing it…

The words to which are as follows…

God sent His son, they called Him Jesus,

He came to love, heal, and forgive.

He lived and died to buy my pardon,

An empty grave is there to prove my Savior lives.

Because He lives, I can face tomorrow.

Because He lives, All fear is gone.

Because I know He holds the future,

And life is worth the living just because He lives.

How sweet to hold a newborn baby,

And feel the pride and joy he gives.

But greater still the calm assurance,

This child can face uncertain days because He lives.

Because He lives, I can face tomorrow.

Because He lives, All fear is gone.

Because I know He holds the future,

And life is worth the living just because He lives.

And then one day I’ll cross the river,

I’ll fight life’s final war with pain.

And then as death gives way to victory,

I’ll see the lights of glory and I’ll know He lives.

Because He lives, I can face tomorrow.

Because He lives, All fear is gone!

Because I know He holds the future

And life is worth the living just because He lives!

Isn’t that beautiful? It spoke to me like a blazing reminder that even though I my sin piles up around me and life can challenge me to my limits, I can face tomorrow, Because HE lives.

(Words to “Because He Lives” by Bill & Gloria Gaither)
(Pictures from Easter morning:)


  1. I love that hymn! So true, and a wonderful peace for us moms.
    I've never seen that children's bible...I LOVE ours as does my 4 year old!
    The Jesus Storybook Bible Every Story Whispers His Name!

    1. Isn't that a great hymn;) I have been having so much fun reading a few pages of Hunter's little Bible with him at night before bed...its such a nice little tradition to begin now while he is young!

      Thanks so much for coming by!!

  2. Hunter has the perfect "Oh WOW Mom! This is AWESOME!" look :) It's a good thing he's so excited about those books because instead of candy he got.. spoons?? Hehe just kidding, he is a lucky little man. I'm glad your Bible study turned out so well, it sounds really good. I love when songs like that get stuck in my head. Lately I've had "Hear oh Israel the Lord your God is one Lord, you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart" stuck in my head, but I can't find the recording of it that we learned at Calvary. Do you know if Mr. Hall wrote that version?

  3. hahahaha...yes...spoons. boring I know, but what do you give a 5 month old who has EVERYTHING he could possibly need and then some??? I loved the Beth Moore study and would highly recommend it! I think that Mr. hall did write the song stuck in your head, so you won't find it online;(


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