Amazing Love

Baby in the Manger – Holy Holy Holy

Carols 2012 – Amazing Love – in planning and execution for months – was experienced by literally thousands this past weekend. Five worship opportunities (not performances or concerts) were shared over three days with over 15,000 people in person and over the web with countless more. Folks are still watching the archived links. Others will watch edited versions for broadcast later this month during scheduled times and for the first time, from Comcast On Demand. 

Adoration of the King – Joy! Joy!

 Most every year, I think it cannot get more personal, more intensely spiritual. I was, again, wrong this year. It was so obvious God was, and still is, at work among the players (choir, orchestra, crew, actors, staff, ushers, security folks). Like the instruments in the orchestra, we are instruments in His Hand.

How Deep the Father’s Love for Us – Sets the theme of Amazing Love

 In the span of less than 90 minutes, the Gospel was clearly presented five times. We know already that folks came from miles away to worship with us; that an individual in Nevada viewed online as did one of of the partner mission churches in England. More important, I know specifically of three professions of faith and expect we will confirm there were others. There were countless seeds planted.

Carol to the King (processional)

I know God was there – for one thing, the devil was working overtime for over two weeks throwing roadblocks at the organ, through UPS, killing a lighting console, dishing out the flu and other illnesses, among other things.  But, man oh man, did God ever empower the “over-comers”. From the time of arrival Friday night until the last person left after break down Sunday night, God’s instruments were empowered and were giving spiritually, emotionally, musically with an intensity unlike any I have experienced in my prior 31 Carols’ experiences. I am still in awe. I am still wondering how this will play out in the days to come. I am still wondering how God will continue to use us.

Light of the Stable – Ballet Magnificat

These are just some of the photos from the weekend. They are the work of Lane and Judy Rushing, members of FBCJ and two of the many volunteers (Lane – sound; Judy – fabric work for the set).  These photos capture the essence of our sharing.


O How He Loves You and Me    

The scene above was the one that constantly got to me – Mary – the same Mary who held the Christ Child at birth, also held Him in death – yet that was not the end, as the words to Be Born in Me state:

All this time we’ve waited for the promise,  
All this time You waited for my arms.
Did You wrap yourself inside the unexpected
So we might know that Love would go that far?
Be born in me.
Be born in me.
Trembling heart, somehow I believe that You chose me.
I’ll hold You in the beginning, You will hold me in the end.
Every moment in the middle, make my heart your Bethlehem.
Be born in me.
Sunday morning during worship, Dr. Page shared from Revelation 3:1-6. The passage is about the Church at Sardis and is summed up in verse 1. “I know your deeds, that you have a name that you are alive, but you are dead.”  He talked about about people who “appear” alive on the exterior – who go through the motions of church or Carols or other because we have always gone through the motions – but who are dead on the inside spiritually. We have to be alive on the inside for it to be real (Dr. P stated that far more eloquently). God has to live in our hearts. We must have and then share His Amazing Love. This passage goes on to say in verse 3: “Wake up, and strengthen the things that remain, which were about to die; for I have not found your deeds completed in the sight of My God.” In other words, get yourself together spiritually, repent, and be His instrument.
Dr. Page also shared this passage from Hosea 10:12 (NASB) – seems to me that this passage really is the charge to us once we repent as He commanded the Church at Sardis: “Sow with a view to righteousness, reap in accordance with kindness; break up your fallow ground, for it is time to seek the Lord until He comes to rain righteousness on you.” Sow. Reap. Seek.
Our job is not complete. The charge to us is clear. His Amazing Love still is to be shared with many.
I believe. God with us!
Still Choosing Joy!