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"Everyone's Got A Story To Tell"

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"Oh, give thanks to the LORD! Call upon His name; Make known His deeds among the peoples!"

1 Chronicles 16:8


Listening to Christian recording artist Chris Sligh in concert at our church on Tuesday night give the backstory on a few of the songs from his newly released album the Lord reminded me of the power of our testimony in ministering to others. Like most of us walking this planet Chris has endured his fair share of hurt and pain. What makes Chris different from many though is his willingness to share his story openly without blaming others as he has learned God is working in and through everything he has gone through in this life for God's glory and for the good of Chris.

Instead of playing into the devils hand Chris has risen above life's hurts and pain and found the silver lining in life as it were where, "all things work together for good to them that love God and are called according to His purposes." As Chris sang the words to a new song with the following lyrics, "God turns things backwards" he shared how in the world we are defined by "what we bring to the table" and immediately the Lord brought to mind The Last Super we read about in John 13.

John 13:1-7 recounts the story of Jesus last meal with His disciples before He went to the Cross. "Now before the feast of the Passover, when Jesus knew that His hour had come that He should depart from this world to the Father, having loved His own who were in the world, He loved them to the end. And supper being ended, the devil having already put it into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon's son, to betray Him, Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into His hands, and that He had come from God and was going to God, rose from supper and laid aside His garments, took a towel and girded Himself. After that, He poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples' feet, and to wipe them with the towel with which He was girded. Then He came to Simon Peter. And Peter said to Him, "Lord, are You washing my feet?" Jesus answered and said to him, "What I am doing you do not understand now, but you will know after this."

In a world where we are defined by what we bring to the table Jesus steps in and God turns things backwards. I loved the pictures racing through my mind. No longer are we defined by what we bring to the table, because of God's love we are now defined by what Jesus brings to the table. Just like the disciples seated at the Lords Supper that night we often times don't understand what Jesus is doing. It seemed all backwards as they knew in their hearts they should have been washing His feet and yet it was God who sent His Son to wash ours. In the song Chris Sligh was singing one line contained the lyrics, "God gave imperfection worth" and I can just imagine how the disciples must have felt when Jesus stooped down in front of them one by one and humbly and gently washed their dirty, tired, achy feet. Washing their feet that night was just the beginning of God giving imperfection worth. The Cross would provide the ultimate display of God's love and the value He places upon each of our lives, imperfect as we may be.

Because of the Cross the song Chris was singing continued, "All thats broken comes alive, You make all the hurt and shattered things brand new." As I sat listening to this beautiful song I wondered where Chris received the inspiration for it? It didn't take long to find out. I invited Chris to go get a bite to eat after the concert and as we sat on the patio of a local restaurant with no one around us to make the conversation uneasy, I asked Chris plainly, "So what's your story?" And pretty much the rest of the night I sat, listened and munched on chips and salsa as I learned the backstory to almost every hit song Chris has written. I was humbled by his transparency and encouraged by the grace and mercy of God that Chris has discovered through the highs and lows of life. In all honesty I enjoyed our conversation just as much or even more than the concert. I know this, the songs all have more meaning to me now knowing what lead to them being written in the first place.

Listening to Chris share brought to mind Revelation 12:11 which reminds us, "And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death." We often forget that there is power in the fact that Jesus shed His blood on Calvary's Cross, and there is power as well in our personal testimony of Christ and how His life has changed ours. Chris might have looked like just an ordinary guy but when he shared his testimony Tuesday night he went from being anything but ordinary, he became extraordinary!

The good news is this! What's true about Chris is true and you too! Everyone has a story to tell and it's our relationship with Jesus that moves any of us from being ordinary to extraordinary. You might not be an accomplished musician or song writer like Chris Sligh, but if you have received Christ as your personal Savior and Lord, you definitely have a story to tell about the grace and mercy of God in your own life that others desperately need to hear. Remember, "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new" (2 Corinthians 5:17).

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"But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear"

1 Peter 3:15

I LOVE YOU! 

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