Tenth Avenue North – “Heaven’s Sound” (Devotional)

Hebrews 12:1-3; Psalm 103:10

The nagging fear springs up on me from time to time. It’s the one I just can’t seem to shake. A little voice seems to perpetually creep its way back into my mind, “If He truly knew you, He wouldn’t love you.” And yes, I know it’s a lie, because I am fully known and fully loved by a God whose very essence is love, but still, I battle. I fall to my fears.

But there is a passage I have clung to of late. The opening of Hebrews 12 lifts the crushing weight of accusation and gives me room to breathe. I heard a sermon once talking about who those witnesses are. As a result, his proposal shocked me.

Imagine yourself running the spiritual race which is your life. You’re exhausted, worn, and about to lay down in defeat. But as you limp closer to the victory tape, the congregation surrounding the finish line comes into focus, and they’re going absolutely crazy. Your eyes narrow, and you begin to recognize faces in the throng. David is among them, and he’s yelling, “I committed adultery! I killed a man! Keep going!” Peter is beside him screaming, “I denied Him three times! Get back up!” Jonah is proclaiming, “I was used in spite of myself! You can be redeemed!”  Noah reminds you of his drunken state. Moses recounts his fear and pride.  The faces and stories go on forever singing, ΓÇ£We are known yet we are loved for all eternity!ΓÇ¥

In case you’ve forgotten, heaven will be full of redeemed people. Have you thought about that lately? Everyone in heaven will be there, because of someone else’s righteousness.

Today, let’s offer praise to God. He deserves it for loving low-lifes like us. Let’s join in heaven’s sound; the strong and weak lifting their voices together in earth-shaking harmony. As songwriter Derek Webb once so eloquently understood, “The strong, the tempted, and the weak are one in Jesus now.”

I dream of a day when the failing and the faithful can stand side by side praising our Savior together. The weak will glory in His grace, the godly will revel in His enabling strength. In conclusion, if the songs we sing in corporate worship can only be sung by one of these groups, I wonder at its power. May we lift up one voice together.

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