My husband fell ill in the first half of 2007 but ended up in hospital in September and was basically in hospitals for 4 months before he was given a ‘death sentence’ of terminal cancer. After returning home and battling to nurse him by myself and then with home-care nursing, believing that he would get up from his sick bed, he fell into a coma on the night of Friday, March 28, 2008 and was moved to the hospital on Saturday. With the home-care nurse at his side, I left that night with my sister. The mood wasn’t great at her home because my father had died of a sudden heart attack there on Easter Sunday, March 23, but I was able to sleep and recharge.
As I walked into the hospital from the car park on that morning of Sunday, March 30, an old ‘love song’ bubbled up from my heart and I personalized it, singing over and over to the Lord:
“I keep falling in love with You over and over, and over and over again;
I keep falling in love with You over and over, and over and over again.
You get sweeter and sweeter as the days go by
O, what a love between the Lord and I
I keep falling in love with You over and over, and over and over again.”
Little did I know that in His own wonderful way, God was wooing me into His loving arms and helping me fall in love with Him all over again. By the time I walked into the hospital room, I was all His. So I did the first thing that came to mind – I went to the space between the wall and the head of the bed where my husband lay in a coma, and I had a concert for One. I worshipped God with all my heart. When I couldn’t sing for the tears, I heard the voices of my sister and friend singing on until I could continue, although the worship was also expressed in the many tears.
I worshipped because I recognized that He was God Almighty and deserving of my worship. I worshipped because I loved Him with all my heart. So when, a few hours later, my husband went to be with the Lord, I didn’t love Him any less because He was still who He was – GOD! And yes, He was still good because that’s just His nature – goodness. He didn’t change but I did. I was made stronger, better and more like Him as I learned a bit more about seeing life through His eyes from the vantage point of His loving arms.
Fire purifies metals like silver and gold, getting rid of the dross and increasing the quality and value of the metals. In the same way, the ‘fires’ of life have the potential to do the same to us IF we submit to the process and recognize God’s sovereignty in everything. I read of how the silver refiner monitors the heat and the silver, not letting it stay longer than needed and when he was asked how he knew when the silver was at the right point, he said that at that point, he would be able to see his reflection on it. The fires are designed to get rid of the things that are not of God in our lives – the bitterness, the malice, the greed, the list goes on – and to make us into Christ’s image. It’s a painful process and it’s not a once-and-for-all process either but a recurring one to make us more and more pure until we are completely His image at His return or our exit from these earthly shores. But guess what, we CAN worship from a place of pain. I don’t have any verse to prove this but I believe that is the most aromatic worship that we can offer God because that is utter submission to His Lordship over our lives.
Between yesterday and today, I have taken the time to really listen to a song that I love because it shows a heart that worships from a place of pain; a heart that wants to be with the King just because He is King, not for what one can get from Him. Here is the chorus:
“Take Me To The King
I don’t have much to bring
My heart’s torn into pieces
It’s my offering
Lay me at the throne
Leave me there alone
To gaze upon Your glory
And sing to You this song
Take Me To The King”
(‘Take me to the King’ by Tamela Mann)
Dear worshipper, make God your greatest desire and in the fire or the storm, offer Him the sacrifice of your surrendered will as a pleasing sacrifice (Rom.12:1)