“My life is yours. My hope is in you only. And my heart you hold. ‘Cause you make this sinner holy.” All Sons & Daughters
The reality of the Christian life is the truth that my soul is, and must be, carried by Jesus Himself to be safe, secure, cared for, and protected. The reality is that I am inadequate to carry my own soul, and it’s because I was born with a longing to be His. It’s because I was born a sinner, unchangeably. Even as one saved by grace alone apart from any works, I am a sinner until I fall asleep in my grave.
So, what is the solution to being a born sinner with a deep longing to belong to Jesus? How could I attempt to refresh my own soul from my filth and mire? I can’t. The solution is that He was always meant to carry our souls, always meant to be the Shepherd of our souls, always been able to carry us and our baggage, so maybe we let Him.
Maybe we risk our whole selves on this Jesus, maybe as a last resort. Or a first. Maybe we believe that He loves that whole of us we give to Him. Maybe He really, honestly, does delight in us, scars and all. If He Himself conquered death, bringing us incredible victory, I can’t not believe that His greatest joy is when we accept it. He did that for us, you know? Not to prove a point, not to outwit His Father, none of that. He did it for these old souls of ours, souls that are tired and bedraggled and beaten down.
He did it that we may have complete access to Him, His eternal life, and the Father Himself. He did it to bring us from a place of being incorrigible enemies of God to being the very friends of God, to dine at His table. To dine at His table in freedom from shame of the past, from the fear of death or of others or of ourselves, from the slavery of sin. Not only released from our bonds, shackles, and cords, but invited now to dine with the Kindness that liberated us.
This is the Christian life, that broken and attempting to uphold our own souls, God came to rescue us. That though we didn’t, and cannot, offer God anything, He looks at us with total delight and utter satisfaction with us because of His Son, Jesus’s, sacrifice. That we, crippled by our own burdens, could not ever rescue ourselves. That with tears in our eyes, emptiness in our hearts, and weightiness in our minds, God looked at us and decided He would call us to Himself.
And if this is the case, and if God is as completely kind and deeply loving as He says in His Word and by His action He took to rescue us, it seems that my soul being His is the sweetest delight I could ever know. That God has given me the freedom to dump everything on Him, and He cannot but love me.
And this is the Gospel. This is the amazing grace we sing about in church, and this is the Grace who carries our souls with strength and ease. He is the Good News, and He is the best news.
He is the Shepherd of our souls.