“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him, he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”
Hebrews 12: 1-2
As I approach 52 years of life, I can share with you all that I feel like I am really beginning to live.
Why do you ask?
Well as my Savior draws me into one-on-one’s daily and begins talking to me through Pastor Peter, Pastor Steve, Tim Keller, or Dr Martin Lloyd Jones; His voice becomes clearer and more distinguishable as He tells me who I am, where I’ve come from, where I’m going and what is my purpose. The gospel and biblical truths continued to be affirmed in the process and that has become my armor as I battle this world, my flesh, and the devil.
One of these truths that Tim Keller has explained in a sermon was around the “joy” that was set before our Savior. And of course, you ask, what was that joy?
Drum roll… 🙂
It was us, you and me!
Jesus stayed on the cross because the joy before him was greater than the excruciating pain he went through. He could have called on a legion of angels to save him, or simply have stepped down from the cross, yet he stayed. Jesus WANTED for us, you and I, to spend eternity with him.
As I processed this new-found understanding of our Savior’s joy being us, I began to personalize His death and resurrection. Not only as an actual event in time, but as a personal sacrifice made by my Savior for me. This has ushered in over two years of reflection and thought, a newfound awe-inspiring wonder for Jesus as He communes with me through the word and the Spirit.
As the Spirit moves my body, mind, and heart in faith and in action, Jesus has become the number one love in my life. Because of that, the Father’s will has become my will and the gospel has become my defense as I move forward into battle.
As Dr Martin Lloyd Jones had often preached about this “battle for the mind”; as the Father works His sanctification plan in my life, the lies and insanity of this world have become clearly evident. The devil’s attacks become more frequent as he wages a war in my mind; my Savior’s presence anchors the gospel truths in my heart and I continue to train through daily worship to pause and think; reflect, meditate and obey as these truths embrace my heart to provide a peace and joy that only my Jesus can give.
Brothers and sisters, remember who you are, reflect daily on these gospel truths and free your mind from the lies of this world. May you experience the vast beauty and glory of our King Jesus who seeks us in every moment of the day to love us perfectly as only He knows how.
Praying always for you, my family!
John Park and his family have been attending GRC since 2007.