“Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the worst.”
1 Timothy 1:15 (NIV)
There are many, many hymns that I enjoy singing. Some are classic anthems, others are the latest releases. For example, I was recently introduced to the latest from Hillsong, which included a couple of songs that I have returned to again and again.
So, if you asked what my favourite top 10 hymns are, it would probably depend on what I have listened to in the last month! Yet, there is one hymn that I would always put top of the list, whatever my latest “fashion” in Christian music.
“Amazing Grace! How sweet the sound
that saved a wretch like me.
I once was lost, but now am found;
was blind, but now I see.”
I find that this hymn speaks to my heart. Somehow John Newton, the lyricist, puts into words something that I struggle to express—something that is deep within me. The call of Jesus Christ has turned my life upside down—for the better. Far, far better.
The Apostle Paul was another man whose life was turned upside down. His calling didn’t just change his life for the better, Paul’s writings have blessed Christians down the centuries. He tells us his own personal story as follows: “I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has given me strength, that he considered me trustworthy, appointing me to his service. Even though I was once a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent man, I was shown mercy because I acted in ignorance and unbelief. The grace of our Lord was poured out on me abundantly, along with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus.” (1 Timothy 1:12-14)
Like Paul, our story, our history, has become entwined with the life of Jesus Christ, our Saviour. Through Jesus we find our lives full of mercy, grace, faith and love. Why not revisit your own story? Consider how our Lord has made you part of his story, and how your life has never been the same since. How you once were blind, but now you see. And how once you were lost, but now are found. John Newton was right—God’s grace is truly amazing!
Father, we praise you for your amazing grace! Abundant grace which you have poured out upon us through Jesus Christ. In his name we give you thanks.
Study by Ian Woodley, Lincoln Grace Communion
Further articles can be found at: http://www.daybyday.org.uk/