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How marvelous, how wonderful

For those of us who believe in a heavenly home beyond the grave, we are admonished to let the enormities of this holy week be our main focus. It is no light thing and certainly too immense to celebrate one Sunday morning a year. It is cause for deep reflecting – actually for a lifetime.

Last Sunday, our congregation sang verses of “My Savior’s Love.” I remembered the words from my childhood, standing by my parents near the aisle on the second row of Philadelphia Baptist Church.

Isn’t it strange that words learned decades ago still rest firmly in our brains and now reflect volumes more about “Jesus the Nazarene?”

“How marvelous! How wonderful! And my song shall ever be.” It was a happy chorus with a snappy beat, but at a childhood age, I was vastly limited to having a song of my own. It’s taken the time of years, joys and sorrows to compose my “forever” song.

The enormity of what took place on the cross speaks to me in the fourth verse: “He took my sins and my sorrows, He made them His very own.”

It’s a sobering affirmation to say, “My sins,” but it’s a confession that the Father must hear. Do my “little” sins of half-truths, unkind but private thoughts, murmurings, impatience and short temper find their way to the nails in the cross? Absolutely!

Sorrow is a heavy burden and accompanies all life. Cleansing of sin and resurrection power make sorrows a fleeting parcel that I don’t have to carry for a lifetime. Verse four continues: “He bore the burden to Calvary, and suffered and died alone.”

My burdens, sins, sorrows, on His cross that He carried for me — can anything be that marvelous or wonderful? In the joy of realizing my gift of salvation, I can skip the suffering and the dark, stormy hill of the skull. I must not!

I need to reflect on the cross’s agony, His bruised and bleeding body, His swollen face and pierced scalp, the humility of the cross’s intent. Did anyone care? Death appeared to be the only onlooker. Even His Father had to turn away. Dying in darkness and extreme agony were pieces of the cross I must ponder.

But the chorus comes — “How marvelous, how wonderful is my Savior’s love for me!” And my song that He’s given me, never ends. How marvelous! How wonderful!

Letters to Camille Anding can be sent to P.O. Box 551, Brookhaven, MS, 39602, or e-mailed to camille@datalane.net.