Course: Servant Leadership
Jesus, Part I by Gayle Erwin
I have truly looked forward to studying the real core of the nature of Jesus which is something that has possessed my life. I cannot believe how much this has meant to me! When you see where it is in Scripture I hope that it means as much to you.
The real question in life is: What is God like? Everyone wants to know. Even atheists want to know. I have had some interesting conversations just lately with atheists--people that did not believe in God. And I asked them, "How did you come to that conclusion?" And they get a little bit put out because they did not think they would ever have to defend it. It is really an indefensible situation. Usually they say, "Well, I am a seeker." And I say, "Okay, that is movement." They just sort of say, "We know you are not there, God, so why don't you go away and leave us alone, okay?"
The whole New Age thing seeks after something they know is out there. It is out there, they know, somewhere. The problem is getting in touch with "it." So, they find places where there are vortexes or whatever "it" is and they chant: "Ooohmmm." Then they tinkle bells in an attempt to get in touch with something that is out there.
Well, we have settled that. That sounds arrogant but it really is not. We know what God is like. He is like Jesus. That is exactly why God sent Him, so we would know precisely what He is like. The problem is that we have kind of messed up Jesus too, you know. Through the centuries we have had traditions!--And dare I say this loaded word "mythologies" have gathered around Him and we have painted pictures of Him that are not accurate.
For instance, Christmas is an interesting time. We sing songs. I really wish we would sing those songs all year long. I love them. But there is one particular song that I like but I cannot help but think, "Hmm, Silent Night." Let's talk about that. What silent night? Ha! You know that Bethlehem was jammed with people, don't you? The foreign government that ruled the land said, "Go back to your birthplace. We are going to tax you!" Silent Night? Pubs were full and everyone was angry! For some reason or other we tend to think that there was a cosmic wave that went through and everyone said, "Did you feel that? It must be a holy night." Folks, it was a profane night, and only a small handful of people had any idea what was going on.
And I do not know why it is that we tend to think that Mary had no birth pains. You see all of the pictures of her holding the new born baby Jesus. I wish my wife looked that good after our children were born--just kidding! We seem to think that she just said to Joseph, "It is time." And "boop," there is Jesus wrapped in swaddling clothes.
Oh folks, there is so much that we have done to this scene that places Jesus at an almost untouchable distance. May I begin to bring Him back very close to you? This is the One who wrapped love with skin so that He could be touched.
I think I have made a discovery. Now I know that sounds arrogant too, but what can I say? I think I have discovered some places where Jesus describes Himself. Now in order to know someone, they must reveal themselves to you; otherwise, you make less than accurate observations. For instance, you can look at me and make certain observations: he likes to eat and he likes to talk. But to really know me I must reveal myself to you. And the same is true with God. The beautiful thing is that God does reveal Himself. That is the thing about Scripture, He reveals Himself to us. And that is the thing about Jesus, His revelation of Himself. Jesus reveals Himself as He describes Himself in response to a certain apostolic activity.
Another group of people we will talk about is the apostles. When I say the word "apostle" what pops into your mind? Do you see, as I do, these tall, handsome men with deep bass voices, who walk in unison with Jesus everywhere He goes? And when Jesus finishes speaking they form the apostolic touring choir that sings: "Just as I am without plea," while every head was bowed.
That is not exactly the way these men were. You know what the apostles did more than anything else that is recorded in the Scripture? More than anything else, they argued! I love it. They argued. You never do that, do you? I do. I have never lost an argument. Often the other person had the better case, but that does not mean I lost. But the problem with arguing, especially if it is with your spouse or someone like a roommate or a coworker that you have to stay with, it is never really over. You know that we are going to talk about this again. And that is the way it was with the apostles. Do you know what they argued over? You would think it would be deep theological questions. Surely they resolved the tension between predestination and free moral agency. Surely they did! No. These great men of God argued over who is the greatest. "I am better than you." "You are not." And off they went. I love it because those men encourage me so much. You know, every once in a while when I have argued with someone, even I feel apostolic.
Well, they never would tell Jesus what they were arguing about. There are all kinds of interesting Scriptures. The first one I will read is from Mark 9 beginning with verse 33. It says,
33 Then He [this is Jesus] came to Capernaum. And when He was in the house He asked them [this is the apostles He is asking], "What was it you disputed [or argued] among yourselves on the road?"
34 But they kept silent, for on the road they had disputed among themselves who would be the greatest.
It is hard to tell Jesus, isn't it, when you are arguing about something like that? You cannot go up to Jesus and say, "Well, we were trying decide which of us is the greatest in the kingdom" (cf. Mark 9:35).
I have noticed that about prayer. There are some things, when I approach the Lord in prayer that I might say to you, but I would not say them to Jesus. That is one good thing prayer does for you. It sort of straightens out some of your thinking because you realize that some things you begin to pray are ridiculous.
So they would not tell Jesus what they were arguing about and I understand. Here is where I believe there is beauty and humor in Scripture. I want to enlarge a little bit here. I do not want to change it but I want to put myself in it and think how this might have gone. Jesus is busy being the Messiah. The apostles are busy arguing with one another. "Who is the greatest?" Jesus says, "Hey, what were you guys arguing about back there?" They respond, "It's okay. It is private. You do not need to know." But Jesus knew. Oh, I love this. I can see the twinkle in His eye as He almost says, "That is okay, I do not need to know. But can I give you a teaching, fellas?" "Okay, go ahead. You're the boss." "Let Me tell you who the greatest in the kingdom is." They might have looked at each other and said, "You must have told." "I didn't tell!" Can you see the shock on their faces? Personally, I think Peter started the argument. I can see him folding his arms and thinking, "Good. I would rather they hear it from Him than from me."
But it is here, you see, where I believe I have had this discovery of seeing the nature of Jesus. When Jesus begins to teach about the greatest in the kingdom, He was teaching about Himself because He was greatest in the kingdom. So this set of teachings that He did in different places becomes an incredible revelation of His very nature. And He says, "He that is greatest"--And I can see the guys thinking, "Yeah, yeah. Is it me? Is it me?" But Jesus said, "He that is greatest must be servant of all." Slave is a better word than servant. Isn't that exciting? I know that it really is not.
I have often thought if I were to go on television like some hucksters I have seen and say: "Ladies and gentlemen, normally people travel thousands of miles and pay thousands of dollars to attend this seminar, but today I have a special deal just for you. If you will send me five hundred dollars, I will send you fifteen tapes and twelve books and in one week, you too can be a slave!" My mother might send in a few dollars, but if I were to go on TV and say: "If you will send me five hundred dollars, I will send you fifteen tapes and twelve books and in one week you too can be rich!" Oh man, the checkbooks would come out and somebody would get rich--me!
Well, Jesus continued teaching. Let me just read this to you and then we will go on and consider it here in Mark 9:34-35.
34 But they kept silent, for on the road they had disputed among themselves who would be the greatest.
35 And He sat down, called the twelve, and said to them, "If anyone desires to be first, he shall be last of all and servant of all."
We better deal with this. What is a servant's job? Well, a servant's job is to make life better for someone else. It is really as simple as that. A servant's job is to live toward others in a way that frees them to become all that they were created to be. I am amazed as I read Galatians at how much Jesus is about freedom. Freedom!
Another operating description is that a slave or a servant is someone who is "others-centered." That is especially different from being "self-centered." Now this is rather embarrassing to me because I have to make some confessions here. I do not always like to do that up in front of this many people. But I am afraid I have to confess to you that I am an incredibly self-centered man. I am sorry. I do not want to be, but I am. I think of myself most of the time. If there is a group photograph and I am in it--there I am. I find me first. I have never met a mirror I did not like.
Now the thing about being self-centered as opposed to others-centered is that it is miserable. It is really miserable. Jesus said it would be. You know, He told us this in the Bible, this Book that we could call the Manufacturer's Manual. You know, He created you and so He knows how you work. If you are going to fix your automobile, you go to the manufacturer's specs to be able to tune it up right. And if you want to tune yourself up right, go to the manufacturer's specs. And He who made you said, "If you want to find your life, lose it." Wow. Lose it? I know God said that because I would not have. I would have said, "You only go around once in life so grab it all! Get there before someone else does. That is the only way to do it!" Or I would have gone down to my local bookstore and found books like Looking Out for Number One; How to Win by Intimidation. It is only here in the Manufacturer's Manual that you hear Jesus say, "If you really want to find your life you have to lose it. In fact, if you really try to find it, you will lose it" (cf. Matthew 16:25).
Oh, I should have known that. He said it, but I learn slowly. In fact, I could have known it from just simple observation. You are familiar with this thing called "self-consciousness." It is misery, I know. I have a genetic problem here. I know it is genetic because my dad looked like this. But I have discovered in my old age that I have to lean over further when I eat because if I do not, I soil my clothes. I am embarrassed when I know I am going to be up in front of people and they are going to think, "He is a messy eater, isn't he?" And so I have learned how to walk around and cover things very well. And if I have to shake hands with somebody, I can do a quick switcheroo, you know. But I am spending time on myself and it is misery listening to me isn't it?
Have you ever awakened in the morning and you got up late and you are in a rush and you look in the mirror. That is a dangerous thing to do. But you look in the mirror and there is a hair that is being disobedient. Boing, boing. And you do everything you can because you are in a rush to get out. Boing, boing. And you are out now in public and you are walking around like this because you know people are staring at you thinking: "He must not own a comb." It is misery.
In fact, I should not talk about my wife, but when she gets a run in her stocking, the world has come to an end! All of Southern California stops and stares--she just knows it! It is amazing what this does to her.
Jesus knew that. So He said, "I do not want you to live miserable lives. I do not want you to live that way at all. That is not freedom. That is tormenting. I want you to give yourselves away. I want you to find out what it means to really tune yourselves up so that you work right." Wow.
In fact, one of the most interesting concepts in Scripture is that we are the body of Christ. Now that is very good to know because God has issued each of us a body, and so we know how bodies are supposed to operate. Are you aware that every single part of your body is a slave to the rest of your body? Not one part of your body exists for itself. Even if you take a part of it out at night and lay it on a shelf, you would not put a banana there so your dentures can eat during the night. In fact, it is this kind of thing that makes you healthy and happy and even able to be here and enjoy yourselves, because your body is serving itself. Every part is serving the rest.
What if it was different? Have you ever thought about that? Just certain simple things could not go on. For example: you took a deadly weapon in your hand and you rammed it into a morsel of food. And it came toward your face at breakneck speed. You could lose an eye. But at the last second with phenomenal precision, your mouth flew open and the fork deposited the food over and over and over. You never missed and there was no blood or anything, man. That is great precision. Now what if your hand decides, "I am tired of this routine because it is the same thing over and over. I want to do it my way." No. Your body does not do that. It is delighted to cooperate with itself even with the simple act of clapping!
It is possible for one part of your body to begin to serve only itself. It does happen. It is a medical condition. Doctors have a name for it. They call it cancer. The very nature of cancer is when one part of the body begins to serve only itself. And we consider that a dreadful disease because it is life threatening. If only we understood what a dreadful disease and how life-threatening self-centeredness is in the body of Christ.
Well suddenly this takes on a different hue, doesn't it? We think, "Oh yes, of course, servanthood makes all the sense in the world." And it really does when you see how God is and how He has revealed Himself through Jesus and what begins to happen in our lives when we follow Him. It is incredible!
Jesus compares Himself to a couple of other kingdoms in order to explain to us how He is. One of those would be the kingdom of the Gentiles. Now I will read it to you in a minute. But He says, "You know the rulers of the Gentiles." In other words, "those who are the greatest in the world kingdom." Gentiles would be what they would basically call the world out there, the pagan world. He said, "You know the rulers are the greatest in the Gentile kingdom and they lord it over others." He says, "Not so with you" (cf. Matthew 20:25-26).
So "not lording over" becomes our second point here which makes sense if you understand number one. It would not make much sense for me to come to you and say, "Look, I am your slave and you will do what I tell you." That does not compute. But isn't it amazing how many people get the wild idea of who they are by how many people they are over? Oh, I am constantly among groups of guys. We get together from time to time, pastors and the like, and we will kind of sidle up to each other and say, "How many do you have?" And in some way the world is constantly asking that question. But if you understand number one: being a servant, then number two: being humble, makes all the sense in the world.
Jesus compared Himself to another kingdom and that is the kingdom of religion. Now you have lived long enough to know that religion and the kingdom of God are not necessarily the same thing. And Jesus knew it too. And so He said, "You know the teachers of the law--the scribes, the Pharisees, those who sit in the seat of Moses--or shall we say the seat of authority or the greatest in the religious kingdom--and how they love to lay heavy burdens on others. But they themselves will not lift a finger to carry the load." He says, "Do what they say, but don't do as they do!" (cf. Matthew 23:2-4).
So the only valid form of leadership in the kingdom of God is leadership by example. I am not free to say to you, "Do as I say, not as I do!" No. But I am free to say as Paul said, "Follow me as I follow Christ" (1 Corinthians 11:1). I am so delighted that Jesus did not come to this earth and say: "I have come to lay down certain basic principles which I would expect you to learn very carefully and gather together with all the other great learning of history and come up with a thing called 'Christianity.'" No, He says, "Follow Me. Follow Me and I will make you to become fishers of men" (cf. Matthew 4:19).
Now this is the thing that many who do not know the Lord really don't understand. They think, "Oh yes, I believe in basic Christian principles and the ethics of the great religions of the world." No, no. Jesus is not basic Christian principles. He is a person. And He did not say, "Follow My basic Christian principles." He said, "Follow Me." He is a person and we are to follow Him.
I realized once that just about everything I know I have learned by example, really. In fact, my wife and I have four children and they have taught us more than we ever taught them. I tried hard to teach them proper table manners but they eat like me. It is what they see. I have a crazy habit. I often will stand with my thumbs in my belt loops and my hands in my pockets like that. It is a worthless habit. It does not bake any bread, but I do it. And one day when my son was about four or five years old--I have forgotten--but he had his first pair of belt loop trousers. And I was standing like this and my wife said, "Psst. Look!" I looked over and there he was, looking at me. And I thought, "Would you look at that. Just by example I have taught him a totally useless habit." That is what happens.
I have some dear friends who, when their cute little daughter was about six years old, she was playing on the patio of the church with some of her friends. And the mother was standing about ten feet away. At one point, this little girl did this with her friends. She went: "Ho-hmm. I am so tired." I looked at the mother and smiled and she said, "Oh! I guess you know what goes on at my house." I said, "Yeah." If you have a five or six year old, just let me spend a few hours with them and I will know all about you. They just do what they see. We learn by example, don't we.
I had a pastor friend who I think had caught the understanding of this. He called me one Monday actually and he said, "Hey Gayle, I have to tell you about this sermon I preached yesterday." I said, "Great. I like to hear things like that because if it is really good, I borrow it." He said, "The title of it was 'Some Things I am Sick and Tired of.'" I thought, "Oh man, you are not preaching sermons like that, are you?" He knew what I was thinking so he said, "Now don't jump to conclusions until I tell you." He said, "The first point was this: I am sick and tired of expecting you to pray, when I have not been praying." He also said, "I am sick and tired of expecting you to read the Bible when I have not been reading the Bible." He said, "I am sick and tired of expecting you to give when I have not been giving." I thought, "All right! You have caught on."
Jesus said, "Follow Me. I will make you to become fishers of men" (cf. Matthew 4:19). He never expects us to do anything that He has not done first and shown us how. I love it!
Paul says to the church at Thessalonica, "You have been imitators of me and now you are a model for the rest of the churches in Asia" (1 Thessalonians 2:14). This is exampling going on. To the church at Philippi he says, "The things you have heard from me, and learned from me, and seen in me, these do" (cf. Philippians 4:9). Wow! But it is so comfortable following when this kind of thing is going on. It is so comfortable following when there is modeling, where there is a biblical example. Then you know you will be able to do it.
Some years ago, I was teaching in Nashville. My wife and family were on the coast of Mississippi where my mother lives and they were going to drive up to join me. Well, to get to Nashville from there you have to go through a town called Mobile, Alabama. It is a beautiful old town. It just was not designed to drive through, that's all. The freeway bypass was not complete. It went out into the middle of a swamp and stopped and didn't tell you it was going to stop. For two hours my wife tried to get through that town. She would stop policemen and ask directions. She would stop at service stations and ask directions--directions were not her strongest area. And finally at the point of despair--now I do not know if you have ever been at a point of despair in your life--she stopped at one more service station and said, "Sir, will you please help me get through this town?"
Now if you have ever been at a point of despair and asked for help, you have probably heard what this man said. "It's easy." Don't you hate that, when you have been breaking your neck and they say, "It is easy." He said, "All you have to do is go this direction." And he described it. Now if you have ever given advice, you have heard what my wife answered. "I tried that and it did not work." He said, "Well, there is another way you can go." And he described it and she said, "I tried that and it did not work." So he looked at her for a second and he said, "Then you are not going to make it through this town." And he turned away. Fortunately, there was a man overhearing the conversation who said, "Lady, if you don't mind following me, I know this is a tough town to get through, so I will show you." May wife said, "All right!" So she got behind and they went down Government Street onto the Bankhead Tunnel, up the east side of the Mobile River and they drove miles beyond until the freeway began again. He stopped said, "Now you get on there. It takes you straight to Nashville. You cannot get lost." Now I do not know this man and I do not know if he was a Christian, but he certainly understood how Jesus led. "Follow me." Oh, I like that.
Then Jesus says, "He that is greatest must be humble." I never have liked that word. And it is mostly because I have misunderstood it. You see, for so much of my life I thought humility was basically an inferiority complex. It worked its way out in my life this way: "I am really nothing. I can't sing, can't play a piano, can't pick a guitar, and I can barely pick my nose." And people would respond to me the way I wanted them to. They would say, "Oh Gayle. You are so humble." I would say, "Thank you. It is not me, it's the Lord." Until I heard the Lord say, "It is not Me either. I want to have nothing to do with that!"
See that is not humility; that is sickness. Humility really is an accurate assessment of ourself. It is being absolutely honest with ourself. It is an honesty principle, actually, being honest about myself. Now that can be devastating. An accurate view of yourself will drive you to the Lord. We could describe this principle as: being up-front; plain vanilla; what you see is what you get; transparent; willing to be read like a book; living without pretense, without hypocrisy.
Now, a falsely humble person is a pain to be around. They really are. A falsely humble person says, "I'm just your humble servant that is all. I am just coming over here just to serve you and I just want you to know that I am just going to hang around here and be your humble servant. Please understand. I am just going to be your humble servant." And then you begin to think, "Get him out of my face, man!"
A truly humble person is a delight to be around because you never have to figure them out. If they say, "Good morning" you do not have to think, "I wonder what he meant by that?"
One of my favorite stories in the Old Testament is in Exodus 3. I like Moses. He had a PhD in Egyptology. He had messed his life up something terrible. And now the best job he can get is way out on the back of the desert, herding sheep. They are not even his sheep. Moses did this for forty years, think of that--forty years! What have you ever done for forty years that is so boring? And finally God says, "I think I can talk to this man now."
I have often prayed, "God, don't let me get so hard headed that it takes You forty years to get in touch with me." God says, "I think I can talk to Moses now." So God sets a bush on fire. Have you ever wondered which bush? Oh they have billions of thorn bushes in that desert. How did He pick a bush? Did He have a Mr. Thorn Bush of Israel contest or what? I think He looked for one that was nearby, available, and would burn. And He sets this bush on fire. And Moses (bored to tears in the desert) sees it. He probably thought, "All right, something different in the desert. Let's check this one out." He was eighty, you know. He gets over here and discovers that it was not your average bush. It didn't burn up. In fact it was even more special, it spoke! And it knew his name, "Moses, Moses!" "What?" "Take off your shoes. You are on holy ground." He took off his shoes. And promptly entered into an argument with the bush! I love it. That takes nerve. Jewish people have a stronger word for that. They called it "chutzpah." That is like murdering your parents and then throwing yourself on the mercy of the courts as an orphan.
The bush won and Moses says, "Okay I'll go. I will talk to Pharaoh. I will talk to the children of Israel. But what is Your name? When they ask me who sent me, what will I say?" And God said, "You tell them I AM--that I AM has sent you." I AM. I get goose bumps when I say that. I AM. You see if I were to send you I would have to say, "Tell them I AINT has sent you or THE GREAT MAYBE." But God is the great I AM. The thing is He says, "This is the name I have chosen to be known by from generation to generation, or from now on" (cf. Exodus 3:14-15). It is His name. Wow!
And Paul tells us in Ephesians 3:14-15 that He is the Father after whom His whole family on earth is named. So that means that is our last name, I AM. How about that--Gayle Erwin, I AM. Now that means our very name calls us to "I Amness." Our very name calls us to honesty. It calls us to being the ones who are unhidden, who say, "Here is the truth about me."
The problem is that I am afraid that so much of the time I even lie with my face. Do you ever do that? No, you would not do that. But there are times when I desperately need prayer and I find myself coming to the gathering of the saints knowing they are going to greet me at the door. So what do I do when they ask, "How you doing?' I say, "Fine. Praise the Lord, I am a Christian. I do not have any problems." And I think to myself, "I would not confess it anyway."
What if one part of your body deceived another part of your body that way? Have you ever thought about it? You see, this is the thing that makes humility so powerful because it means that we give up deception. We give up any lying to others about ourselves. I believe you get to humility by confession. You see, confession is simply telling the truth about yourself. It is saying, "I know this is what you think, but here is the truth. And so here is where you can pray for me." Confession is not necessarily going back and seeing how much you can dig up way back there and pull it up and say, "I bet I have bigger sins than you." No, that is not confession. Confession is just living honestly and saying, "Here is the truth about me and here is where you can pray for me."
The Bible does say, "Confess your faults one to another" (James 5:16). The way I handle that is: "Sure, I will be glad to confess your faults." No. Humility says, "Yes, here is the truth about me. I do not have to be hidden anymore because I am forgiven." What a difference to live openly and freely and unhidden. How much energy it takes to have to hide and cover things up. In fact, what was the first thing Adam and Eve did when they sinned in the Garden? They hid! They began the cover-up process.
By the way, I have a fig tree in my yard and I love figs. But when I pick figs I have to put on a long-sleeved shirt because fig leaves really make me itch. Adam and Eve sewed fig leaves to cover themselves! I imagine them walking around itching--Whoa! They knew they should suffer. And then God comes along and says, "Oh that is not what I had in mind. Let me fix you some lambskin seat covers."
And I have discovered that when I try to cover myself it is painful. Only God knows how to do it. In fact, if you want to create some chaos where you work, especially if you work among people that have not come to know the Lord and do not understand His forgiveness, you can just go up to them and say, "What you have kept hidden for years is going to be revealed today." It is chaos then.
You see, the beautiful thing about humility is when you recognize the truth about yourself, you understand that you are hopeless, and you are a sinner. You cannot quit sinning. You cannot get control of your life. What can you do? That is where God says, "Do I have a plan for you." He says, "All you have to do is come to Me with that hopelessness, that humility, that reality. And I will forgive you and change you." Oh man! He will turn you into an "I AM." And only He can do it.
Your body would not survive without humility and without this honesty to itself. And yet, everywhere I go, I have discovered that every culture including my own, says, "Don't let them know the truth about yourself. Play your cards close to your chest. Keep a poker face." My British ancestry taught me to keep a stiff upper lip. I do not know quite how you do that, but you are supposed to keep a stiff upper lip. If one part of your body tries to deceive another part of your body, you are in desperate condition. It is desperate because the simple act of walking could not occur. You see, I take a step and I am expecting this leg to follow through, right? Well, what if this leg says, "He only thinks I am coming too." I would be on my face, you see.
Look at it this way: Suppose I am standing next to a stove and a burner is on that is red hot. And I do a very unintelligent thing--I lay my hand on the burner. Now if my hand acted the way I have sometimes seen the body of Christ react to certain situations, it would say, "Oh, you have done a stupid thing. Oh, this is embarrassing. Do not let the rest of the body know that you have done this thing. Just be cool." My body would never do that. If I lay my hand on a hot burner, immediately it responds, "Get me off of this! I have done an awful thing!" See, that is the way my body operates because each part is honest with the other part about itself.
We are about half way through with this first part of what Jesus is like and I am going to have to stop here and finish this in our next session. But you have got to think about this because this is so incredibly important. If this is the way Jesus is, He is better than anybody I have ever seen before. I mean, this is incredible. No person that I have ever met, other than Jesus, fulfills this principle. And if you think about who He is and the fact that He has come to be this for us, boy, my overwhelming immediate response is, "Oh Father, I want to be like Him. I want to receive Him. He is the only one that can handle my sins and I want Him to do it."
So, if you don't know Him, the saddest thing in the world would be to walk out of here without the greatest opportunity you have ever had presented to you. Do you want to know the only One who can forgive you and give you that incredible freedom in your heart, that says, "I am forgiven! I am free!" The King of the universe has come, not to get us to serve Him but He came to serve us. And then we cannot help but serve Him. What an incredible opportunity to meet the God who came to show this to us. He walked it out and proved Himself this way. And He is here now to take care of this. What a golden opportunity. May the God of grace and glory overwhelm you with His presence and draw you to Him. Amen.