Saturday, June 16, 2012

An Old Hymn Revisited

Empty.  Naked.  Helpless.  Foul.  

What a horrible condition in which to find oneself!   Bereft of all glory and dignity with nothing to offer.

And yet...what a mercy.  What a gift.  A GIFT?   Yes.  When we find ourselves in this place, then...THEN...we finally come in abject humiliation to the One who can fill, clothe, strengthen, and cleanse us!   When our hands are full, they cannot receive.  When we can take care of ourselves, we don't need rescuing.  When we aren't sick, we don't need a physician.  

Our humiliation makes us receptive to the generous gifts of God and those gracious gifts transform our shame and humiliation to gratitude and humility.  When that happens, we realize our destitution was a gift.  

This old hymn, that I've known from childhood, beautifully expresses a faith that knows it has nothing to recommend itself and is entirely dependent on the mercy and grace of Christ:  

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