FaithView: 12/21/2018

By Joe Torosian

“Something beautiful, something good
All my confusion He understood
All I had to offer Him was brokenness and strife
But he made something beautiful of my life.”
—Bill Gaither

It’s amazing how something can lay dormant inside you and suddenly reappear, resurface, and reassert itself into your life.

You don’t plan it, you’re not thinking about it, you’re just going about the business of family, job, traffic, shopping, cleaning, and caretaking. Then stress comes—maybe a little, maybe a lot—and attempts to crush your day.

But…

In an instant it happens, something pops, and it’s as if God just walked into the room.

God giving perspective, God reminding what you once were and are no longer, God reminding He’s always been there. God reminding that He loved you and continues to love you all the days of your life. God reminding that all those moments you felt insignificant—and possibly worthless—He was loving you. God reminding that you are not random. God reminding that you matter.

But before something can reassert, resurface, and reappear it first has to be planted in you.

The Gaither tune at the top was planted in me during the late ’70s, and early 80’s in countless Sunday night services in church. I was only in church because I was dragged. I sat in the back of the sanctuary, on the left-hand side, hoping the Pastor wouldn’t preach too long, hoping there wouldn’t be an altar call, and hoping I could escape out the side door to my brother’s car before I had to talk to anyone. Nothing made me more uncomfortable than being asked how I was, or being told people were praying for me, or being encouraged to be at the next teen event. I literally hated being in church.

And while counting stained glass tiles, panels in the chandeliers, baldheads, and continually hoping for a clean, quick, getaway…hymns and choruses were being sung. As the worship leader, Mary Rush was pouring her heart into leading the congregation, I didn’t think I was getting a single thing out of it. I wasn’t paying attention, and I certainly wasn’t singing.

“And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”—Philippians 4:7

Flash forward 37, 38 years…

This Wednesday I was headed to quiet time with a big list of things to be thankful for. I did what I do. I sat at my desk, read scripture, and as prayer began this song… “Something Beautiful, Something Good”…came out of my mouth. It came out of my mouth some 37, 38 years after it was first planted in me.

Like all divine moments, it was overwhelming.

In January of 2019, I’ll be starting my 30th year in ministry. I have many hymns, choruses, and songs that I like. I’ve had hundreds of moments where the Spirit was moving, and I took mental pictures to preserve them. There’s music I intentionally focused on and repeatedly played just to keep close at hand for a potential sermon illustration.

There’s plenty of music that moves me, the Gaither song above never was one of them. But during my youth, when I was hearing it on a regular basis, I didn’t realize or even sense (In my confusion, my brokenness, my strife) that it was tapping into my soul. Planting itself as an access point for the Lord to come and remind that He took all my struggles and gave me something beautiful in return.

“…surpasses all understanding…”

A couple of critical points came along with it.

1.) When you’re not interested in anything, God has to say…He still says it, and He still blesses you…Even when all you want to do is get away.

2.) For your children, the young people in your life…NOTHING is in vain. Don’t ever make an assessment and convince yourself that your child or young person isn’t receiving anything. If they are being exposed to the authentic, they are getting something worth having—and something that might take decades to bear fruit, but it will bear fruit. Authentic truth from the scriptures, authentic worship, will drill down and graft deep into us…and remain.

Ready to reappear, resurface, and reassert when God wants time with us.

And that’s the capper. What was planted in me was a direct link to the Creator of the universe. It might have taken some time to figure it out. Like some magnificent treasure hunt in search of a password to a place, a place I had clearly forgotten…But the Lord didn’t forget. He knew where it was all along and was waiting for the right moment.

He clicked on the link, the file, and I responded…And I experienced a rich moment with the One who loves me most.

This link is conditional to no mortal. This link is not erased by a bad day, bad sermon, bad person, bad diagnosis, bad experience, bad feelings, bad politics, bad finances, or bad education. This link, because it is planted deep inside and blended into our spiritual DNA, remains forever.

It is beautiful, it is good, and my confusion He still understands…And I still have nothing to offer Him but brokenness and strife…But He continues, continues, continues to make something beautiful of my life.

He makes something beautiful of all our lives…

3 thoughts on “FaithView: 12/21/2018

  1. Ever since you mentioned this simple song I have tried to remember who the young lady speaker who sang that song when I was in college. It finally came to me as I was reading your blog. It was Ann Kimmel. She wrote a book in 1974, “i Am Out To Change The World.” She shared stories about how that song changed lives of people she sing it to. It is a powerful song.

    Like

  2. Awesome Joe! Timely and relevant on so many levels! Thank you.

    Like

  3. Wow Joe!
    Very powerful message. I always love the way the Lord brings moments, words, songs, things we never would have thought of as important at the time, and refreshes us at just the right time. God is good!!!!

    Like

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