One of my favorite old hymns is Fannie Crosby’s “Blessed Assurance.” The first verse says, “Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine. Oh what a foretaste of glory divine. Heir of salvation, purchase of God, born of His spirit, washed in His blood.”
And the refrain is so powerful. It declares, “This is my story, this is my song, praising my Savior all the day long…” Every time I sing it, I find myself emphasizing the phrase: “This is my story…”
This is my story…each of us who have placed our confidence in the finished work of Christ on the cross; we have a story to tell. Each of us has a powerful story of how Christ invaded our world. He confronted us about our sin. He comforted us by His grace. He challenged us to love for Him.
It is an incredible story. It is individual. It is powerful. It is well worth repeating.
There is an account in the scriptures where Jesus says essentially that. It is found in Luke 8 and Mark 5. It is the story of a demon-possessed man from the region of the Gerasenes (across the Sea of Galilee from Jesus’ home town).
The man is healed, the demons were cast out and in response the guy begs to follow Jesus. But the Savior tells him to “…Go home and tell them (the) great things the Lord has done for you and how he had mercy on you.”
He wanted to travel with the Savior, be a part of the spiritual gang, but the Lord had a more important job for him.
The healed demoniac had a story to tell. He could mention all the bad stuff that being demon possessed entailed. He could speak of the horrors and the social isolation. He could reflect on the pain involved in just living. And then he could share the joys associated with his salvation.
Others would listen with rapt attention because it was HIS story.
This Christmas season, the story about the babe in Bethlehem is being ignored. For many it seems like a children’s historical fantasy with a happy ending. It energizes manger scenes but makes little impact on our family and co-workers.
So this week maybe you could tell another story. One rutted in your own experiences. It is lively. It is meaningful. It matters. Jesus invaded your life and made a difference. Our story needs to be retold with passion.
Let’s commit to at least two “re-tellings” this week. You just start with something simple like, “Can I tell you about my spiritual story? It all began….”
Love that hymn!