Saturday, 21 May 2011

What Can I Give, What Can I Bring?

Maybe there is no better condition or state of the human heart to be in than a thankful heart. Even beyond happy or ecstatic, probably gratitude is a higher and better way to feel and live?

Just last night I was reminded of a song I first learned on the guitar when I was in the UK. And this song 'played' in me again and woke me up 5 something on a Saturday morning and compelled me to write this, when I should be enjoying my bed.

Long before Matt Redman was famous internationally as a song-writer/worship-leader with well-loved and widely-sung songs like Blessed Be Your Name, Better Is One Day and Heart Of Worship, there was another song...a song that was sung across the UK like a gust of fresh air in the worship scene in the mid 90s...a song I heard all the time in every water baptism service....a song sung by all denominations of churches....a song that is probably one of the best that ever came out from the UK worship scene. Because it's so raw, simple and heart-felt. It was Matt Redman's song of testimony, written from a thankful heart. If you know his life story, you'll understand. It's called I Will Offer Up My Life.

I Will Offer Up My Life

I will offer up my life in spirit and truth
Pouring out the oil of love as my worship to You
In surrender I must give my every part
Lord receive the sacrifice of a broken heart 

Jesus, what can I give, what can I bring
To so faithful a friend, to so loving a King?
Saviour, what can be said, what can be sung
As a praise of Your name for the things You have done?
Oh, my words could not tell, not even in part
Of the debt of love that is owed
By this thankful heart

You deserve my every breath for You've paid the great cost
Giving up Your life to death, even death on the cross
You took all my shame away, there defeated my sin
Opened up the gates of heav'n, and have beckoned me in

I don't know a greater motivation to Christian action and service than a thankful heart. Not out of obligation of duty, guilt, charity, generosity, or even encouragement. Not because I should, must or even could. But from a realization of the unwavering truth that I was once lost and broken, and then given an undeserved new life that I could not give myself or by anyone else other than the great Saviour and Lord.

This is not an idea that I can psyche my mind like some personal development programs. This is not even how I can choose to feel. This is way better, overwhelming beyond comparison.

Now that we know that we've been bought at a great cost, what do we do with our lives? What can we bring as an offering fit enough for the King who gave us everything and more? We'd normally question life. But after all that has been done by Christ, it is now life that questions us in return. What's our response?

I'm forever challenged by those questions, and the short 'spontaneous' song below (also by Matt Redman).

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