Friday, June 21, 2013

All That He Can See

“The one who sent me is with me; he has not left me alone, for I always do what pleases him.”  John 8:29

I read these words in my quiet time yesterday morning.  I liked the “with me” bit and the “not left me alone” bit.  There are times when I feel a little bit abandoned and left alone.  It was encouraging to know it was written there in the Bible that God was with me and I wouldn’t be left alone.  But then the last phrase was waiting there to throw the spanner into the works – “for I always do what pleases him.”  Jesus might be able to confidently say those words, but I never can.  It would be nice is the word “try” was somewhere in the sentence, but it isn’t.  The truth of the matter is that I don’t always do what pleases him.  Sometimes I don’t even try.  Does that mean that God steps away and leaves me to my own devices if I don’t please Him?

The Holy Spirit, even before I finished the thought in my head, rushed in to answer the question with a very firm “No!”

The thing is, when God looks at me, He doesn’t see me but He sees Christ.  My life, when I asked Jesus to be my Saviour, became hidden in Christ.  If there was a courtroom, and I was standing in the dock, and there was a prosecutor laying out all the evidence before God, and all that evidence was true, and I had no hope of acquittal – Christ would stand between me and the judge, God.  What God would see would be Jesus and all of His righteousness.  He wouldn’t see me at all. I am hidden. 

When Jesus said, “I always do what pleases him,” because I am hidden in Jesus, I am saying it too not because I always do what pleases God, but because Jesus does. 

I am still on the pathway of doing things to please God.  I am still responsible to work with God to be transformed.  But that list of evidence has been tossed out.  God doesn’t keep it in a back pocket and wave it at me every so often to drive me into righteous behaviour.  Jesus tells me to stay hidden in Him and He will do the things that please God through me.

All That He Can See

I don’t know how he does it but
He stands before God’s throne
Parading all my failures and
The chances that I’ve blown

He questions my commitment
And says that I fall short
For one who is redeemed I rarely
Act the way I ought

How quick to show my anger
How swift to chide and scold
How slow to show forgiveness
How oft’ must I be told?

The Father’s gaze is on me
The words ring in His ears
There are no words to offer
Ashamed I shed my tears

But then the Son steps forward
He stands to take my place
The Father looks not on me
But on His Son’s dear face

God knows my faults so clearly
But when He looks at me
The righteousness of Jesus
Is all that He can see

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