Series: Beyond Boundaries
Message #3: Redeeming Love
By: Jud Wilhite
I have a little boy; he’s almost three years old. One of the things that he absolutely loves to do is he loves to flush things down the toilet. He loves it. I think he even loves it when it gets clogged up and we have to take the toilet apart. He’s into it. We’ve been going round and round with him in our household. I bet it has cost me over $400.00 in plumbing fees to date to fish things out of our toilet that he gets down the toilet. Some of it defies laws of physics. Like he flushed his sisters Barbie doll down the toilet. That takes hand movement to get that done. He flushed not one little people or two but multiple little people down the toilet. Which my plumber brought to me with a smile. He flushed his sister’s sunglasses down the toilet. It’s all kinds of things. I see him sometimes. He stands in the bathroom and looks at the toilet. He knows it’s wrong. He knows if he does it he’s going to sit in time out. He knows he’s going to be in trouble. But he’s eyeing it. I know exactly what is happening because he has my DNA. He’s sitting there and processing. Is it worth it? I know there will be some punishment but is it worth it anyway? The wheels are turning in his little mind.
I thought we had moved beyond the flushing the toilet/clogging it up thing but apparently we hadn’t. His sister, Emma, comes running out from the bathroom this past week. She says, “Dad, Dad – Ethan has flushed a toy tool down the toilet.” I go in and he’s flushed a toy tool down the toilet and it’s all clogged up and won’t flush. I’m not in a good place at this moment. I’m angry and upset. I’m doing the count to ten method. One, two, three, four, five…and it’s just getting worse. I get to ten and it doesn’t help. I go to twenty and I’m just as mad. The inner pastor in me was not welling up. Where is he? I’m looking all over the house and can’t find him. He’s hiding from me. I finally find him – do you know where he’s hiding? He’s hiding in the bathtub behind the shower curtain right by the toilet. He’s right by the scene of the crime. As soon as I go in there he knows. He says, “I’m sorry, Daddy.” Yeah, I have your sorry right here buddy. Actually, I was very nice. I went easy on him. I put him in time out. We had a few tears. He said he was sorry. Of course, about four days later and at this point I don’t call the plumber anymore. I can do plumbing myself. I’ve learned how to do it on my own. If you have plumbing needs, just let me know. I got the toilet off by myself. I had it all taken apart. I can get anything out of a toilet with a hanging rod that I take apart. I’m digging this thing out of the toilet when Ethan comes in and says, “Whatcha doin’ Dad?” What does it look like I’m doing? I think he loves the whole process of it.
It’s a great study of human nature when I think of my three year old little boy because he’s a lot like people. He’s a lot like me and he’s a lot like us. We all have things in our lives that we know we shouldn’t do. We all have things that we’re drawn to or things that we are tempted by. It could be something of a sexual nature in our lives. It could be something of an addictive nature in our lives. For some of us gambling represents that. We may have major issues with it and if we go down that road we know we don’t stop. For some of us alcohol represents that. You go down the list with different items. It’s different for each of us. We all have things we are drawn to. Sometimes, just like my son we stand there before whatever that thing may be and we weigh it out in our mind. I shouldn’t do it. If I do it – it will hurt me. It will hurt my family. It will hurt our future. If I do it – it may put my job in jeopardy. If I do it – it could damage this or that. We do it anyway. Then often after we do it we hide. We don’t climb in the bathtub and pull the shower curtain around us but we hide spiritually in our lives from God. Sometimes after we do it we stay from God or church for a while. We think we’ve blown it and made a mistake and God won’t forgive me. When I get my life together then I’ll get back to church. Sometimes we’ll pull back from a small group that we’re in or our prayer life begins to change. We don’t really feel like we can pray like we used to be able to pray. We just spiritually withdraw and in our own way we hide. Some of us jump into hobbies. Some of us throw ourselves into work. Some of us throw ourselves into addiction. Ultimately when you boil it all down we are hiding in that very thing from the one that loves us most and who wants to help us in the midst of our journey.
I want to talk to you today about how we get up when we fall. How do we recover after we’ve hit the flush knob on our life and we see it get all clogged up. How do we move forward when we’ve failed? The book of Hosea has some great principles about this. We’ve been going through the book of Hosea these last few weeks in this series, Beyond Boundaries. We’ve looked at Hosea 1 and Hosea 2; it’s a book tucked away in the Old Testament, written by Hosea. Hosea is a prophet and he’s speaking for God to the people. God asks Hosea to take Gomer as his wife. Gomer is unfaithful to him in this marriage relationship again and again and again. God uses it as a picture of our relationship with Him. Gomer had a physical affair with Hosea. All through the book you see this happening and then you realize that the real story here is not just Gomer’s affair on Hosea but it’s the people of God’s spiritual affair on God. The fact that they have turned their backs on Him and forgotten who He was.
We get to chapter three of Hosea and things are looking pretty bleak in Hosea and Gomer’s relationship. It’s gone down hill to the point where Gomer has left. She has pursued other lovers. She’s gone after other men in her life. Hosea is alone and not sure what to do. God comes to him in chapter 3:1: “The Lord said to me, ‘Go show love to your wife again though she is loved by another and is an adulteress. Love her as the Lord loved the Israelites though they turned to other gods and loved the sacred raisin cakes.’” Now you read that and think, “What’s the sacred raisin cake?” Is that a new cereal bar that has come on the market? The sacred raisin cakes were cakes that they ate at festivals that honored the storm god, Bale. They honored him for bringing rain to the ground, which then allowed the crops to produce, which then provided food for the people. In essence, what they are doing is worshiping other gods. God says to Hosea to take your wife who has been unfaithful, who has betrayed you, who is currently loved by another and currently an adulteress. Go take her back. He says, “I want you to take her back because that’s how I love my people.”
The first thing that jumps out at me is if we are going to learn how to get up when we fall or fail we have to accept God’s undeserved love. In the picture here, there is nothing that Gomer did to deserve the love of Hosea. She is having an affair on him. She’s sleeping with other people, currently. It’s not like she stopped all this and came back to Hosea saying, “Will you take me back now?” No, she is currently doing it. God says you go and take her back because that’s how I love my people. God’s love for us is undeserved. It’s just flat out undeserved. That’s so important for us to understand.
It’s so different from our love for one another, isn’t it? Isn’t that different from human love? We love each other if. We love each other because. We love each other when. If we don’t meet the standards for love then our love grows cold. It’s like the couple that was driving down the highway and got into a huge blow out fight. The police officer pulls him over and says, “Sir, do you know that you were going one hundred miles per hour?” The guy says, “No way was I going one hundred miles per hour. I always go the speed limit. My wife will tell you, I never break the speed limit.” He leans over and says, “Ma’am, is that true?” She says, “He always breaks the speed limit. He always has the pedal to the metal. Give him a ticket; he deserves it.” The officer starts writing out the ticket. The husband shoots her the look. The officer says, “Sir, I also noticed that you were driving without a seat belt. I’ll have to give you another citation for that.” He says, “Officer, you must be mistaken. I always wear my seat belt. I never drive without it. I’m sure I had it on.” The officer says, “Ma’am, is that true?” She says, “No way. He never wears his seat belt. There are cobwebs on his seat belt. Give him a ticket. He deserves it.” The officer starts writing him up for the ticket. About this time the husband turns to the wife and just lets her have it. He goes off for a minute. When he’s finished, the police officer leans down and looks at the wife. “Ma’am, does he always talk to you that way?” The wife says, “Nope, only when he’s drunk.” That’s human love for you right there.
Human love can be vindictive. It can be harsh. It can be way out of bounds. God’s love is completely undeserved. In fact, we use the word love in so many ways. We say we love Mexican food, we love video games, we love sports, and we love Susan or Joann or Tom. We throw this word around for people, food, and games but in the Hebrew language of the Old Testament they had specific words for love. When we see a word used for love again and again in the first few verses of Hosea 3 and it could literally mean loyal love as it speaks of God’s love for us. He says, “I love the Israelites with a loyal love or a compassionate love.” It can mean an ally that comes up beside and walks with. When God speaks of His love for us He’s talking about a compassionate love, a covenant love, an agreement kind of love that’s based on who He is more than who we are. He’s willing to walk along side us and be our ally in the trenches of life. That’s awesome.
Sometimes when we fail in life or flush and do the thing that we aren’t supposed to do, when we bomb in life, we can start to feel like God doesn’t love us anymore. When we go through tragedy or difficulty we start to wonder where is God in the middle of this. When we get the health report or the divorce papers in the mail, when we find out our kids are using drugs or are rebelling against us. When we find out our spouse has been unfaithful, we ask where is God in the midst of all of this in my life? It’s easy to think that He’s not around. In a room this size there are people here today, if you are honest, you would say, “In our marriage relationship I feel like we are bottoming out. I feel like we are hitting the bottom.” Some of you if you are honest would say emotionally right now you feel like you are bottoming out. Some of you are bottoming out financially and you are living in denial about it. You know it’s real and you know it’s true. You don’t know where to turn and you don’t know how to get out of the hole that you are in. We bottom out in all kinds of areas in our lives. We say, “Where is God when you hit the bottom?”
The Bible has this beautiful passage in Deuteronomy 33:27: “The eternal God is your refuge and his everlasting arms are under you.” Here’s what that means, you cannot go so low, you cannot fall so far, you cannot fail so miserably, you cannot bomb out so big in your life that God’s arms are no longer under you. That’s good news. You can put your hands together for that. Some guy just woke up, what happened? We’re talking about God’s love and how it’s big and so big that it’s underneath you no matter where you feel like your bottoming out in life. That’s amazing news for us in our lives.
In fact, He loves us in this amazing undeserved tremendous way. When it comes to human love we keep score. We do this with God too. We think if we are doing good that’s ten points. If I go to church that’s ten points. We keep score. Take for instance a guy named Terrell Owens. If you have any sense of sports knowledge right now then you are sick and tired of hearing about this guy, Terrell Owens. I am – you turn on ESPN and there he is AGAIN! All I have to say is why is he riding a bike in training camp that’s stationery with a bike helmet on? Did I miss something here? Terrell Owens is a guy – you may not know anything about sports but just follow me – he plays as a wide receiver on a couple different NFL teams. He did really well but ultimately he blew the teams up when he left. I don’t like Terrell Owens. Again, the inner pastor in me does not well up when I hear the name, Terrell Owens. For several reasons, one is he played against the Dallas Cowboys several years ago and he put the ball on the star. He crossed the line, man. I’ll respect your team; you respect mine. I’ll cheer for your team; you cheer for mine. But if you put the ball on the star it goes to a whole new level. He scores a touch down and puts the ball in the middle of the field on the star. Major disrespect. I’ll be honest with you when Roy Williams two years ago tackled Terrell Owens from behind and put him out five or six games in the season, I danced around the living room of my house. I mean, crazy dance. WOO HOO! Lori is saying, “Jud, that’s wrong. You can’t be that excited. He’s hurt. Look at him limping off the field.” I’m like, “It’s football! Limp sucker!” I have major baggage. Then I went and saw a Monday night game with the Eagles and the Cowboys two years ago. They annihilated us. Who is running out getting all the cheer and the applause? Terrell Owens. I was very disturbed this last summer when I heard that the Dallas Cowboys spent a gazillion dollars to get Terrell Owens to come blow up our team. Great…now Terrell Owens plays for the Cowboys. I’ve had major issues with this. But I tell you over the summer my human love has started to change. I start thinking, “We haven’t won a play-off game in ten years. Ten years and no play-off game!” So if he catches enough passes for us to win a play off game I might, at that point, acknowledge that I like him. If he catches enough passes so we win the division, I might even say that I love him. Listen, if he wins the Super Bowl for the Dallas Cowboys I’ll buy his jersey number for my kids. That’s human love though, isn’t it?
Human love is: “I’m keeping score.” If you do this for me then I can warm up to you. If you win the Super Bowl I’ll forgive you for that star thing. I’ll pretend it never happened and we’ll just move on. Sometimes we keep score in our relationship with God. I did good, twenty points. I was nice with my employer, twenty-five points. I was mean to this one so that’s minus thirteen there. We total it all up and get the sense that we are in the red right now. I better go to church and square things up. I better go get right with God. We get right with God and that’s a few more points. What the book of Hosea is saying to us ifundamentally is this: “Put aside keeping score all together. Stop being the score keeper all together because God loves you as you are.” He loves you and it’s undeserved. You can’t earn what you already have. It’s undeserved love. You aren’t worthy of it but you have it. That’s a wonderful thing. The best thing we can do in our lives is just rest in that. It’s this amazing, undeserved love.
Another thing we can remember when we fall down and fail is that we have a call on our lives to live like we were bought with a price. That’s exactly what we see play out in the book of Hosea. In chapter three, Hosea is in a place where she has gone off and she’s with another person and basically she gets herself in a situation of sexual slavery. Hosea has to go get his wife and buy her back from sexual slavery. Can you imagine what this would have been like for Hosea? The Bible talks about it in 3:2, “I bought her for fifteen shekels of silver and about a homer and lethek of barley.” If you put it all together it would have been about thirty shekels in the ancient world. Thirty shekels was the price that was paid for a slave in the ancient world. Hosea went to his unfaithful wife who chose sexual slavery over him and bought her back. Can you imagine the emotions? Can you imagine the pain, the embarrassment, the humiliation on both parts? Can you imagine her feeling like she couldn’t accept his love or kindness towards her? Then he takes her to be with him. The picture that we see in Hosea 3 is one of redemption. Redemption is a term used throughout the Bible. Redemption is an economic word. In the Old Testament for someone to be redeemed it literally means to buy them back.
To buy someone back, just like Hosea bought Gomer back at least three different things had to be in place. First of all that person had to be in bondage or slavery. Secondly, there had to be a price that was paid to get them out of bondage or slavery. Thirdly, there had to be a mediator that would go and pay the price to get the person out of bondage or slavery. Those three conditions were met in the Old Testament when someone was redeemed or bought back. It’s fascinating as you look at this story that God is taking something that happened thousands of years ago and He is setting it up looking towards the future when the day would come when Jesus Christ would come into our world and literally do what Hosea did for Gomer. Jesus would come and live and die and buy us back – redeem us from slavery to sin and death. That’s what the Bible says. It’s a picture of God’s love for us. As we see Hosea buy his wife back, literally, this is a picture. As we move forward in the Bible we see it unfold in the person of Jesus. For example, in Romans 3:23: “There is no difference for all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.” He’s saying that all of us have missed God’s mark in our lives. Therefore we become slaves of sin and the things of sin in our lives. All of us, the Bible says, are in bondage at some level. All of us need to be delivered by the goodness and the grace of God. If you go on a little further he says, “We are justified freely.” That’s big. How many of you like things free? Free is good. We’re justified freely by His grace through the what? Redemption. Through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. God presented Him as a sacrifice of atonement through faith in His blood. Here is what the Bible is saying: That we were in a position of sin and death. Jesus came. He came as the one who would redeem. He was the mediator. He came as one who gave His life and literally paid the price for our redemption to buy us back. Just as Hosea bought Gomer back; God would ultimately buy us back.
God is a just God. Sin had to be punished. He couldn’t just forget all the things that had happened. God was willing to put the punishment for sin on the shoulders of Jesus so that the mercy and free grace could be delivered to us. That’s the good news, friends. That’s what the Christian message is all about. That’s what makes it different from every religion in the world. In every religion in the world you boil it down fundamentally – it’s about do. What will you do to earn and accomplish God’s favor in your life? The Christian faith is about done. What God has already done two thousand years ago in the person of Jesus Christ is what accomplishes our salvation in our life. That is huge.
In my life I have wrestled with this many times and have felt unworthy of God’s love. I felt like God can forgive everyone else but He can’t forgive me. Do you know what that feeling is like? God can forgive this person; God can forgive that person but not me. I can’t forgive myself; God can’t forgive me. Not for the things I’ve done. Not for the stuff that’s happened in my past. Not for the issues that I’ve wrestled with. It took me awhile to realize that when I was thinking that way ultimately what I was doing was I was showing pride in reverse. Basically what you are saying when you say God can’t forgive you is you are saying, “God, you are going to have to pay a higher price for me.” Apparently Jesus wasn’t enough. If Jesus wasn’t enough then I guess you and God can start working out what the price will be for you. What hit me is who am I to tell God how much the price is? Are you with me here? Who am I to set the price? God set the price and the price was His very son. The price, if it’s good enough for God, then it better be good enough for me.
Some people say, “I don’t need God.” That’s pride in one way. Other people say, “I’m unworthy and God could never forgive me.” What I realized is that is pride in another way. I had to realize that what looked like humility was actually pride and I had to lay that down and say, “God, you determined the price. You paid the price. The price was way, way higher than what I’m worth so I’m in. I’m thankful.” That’s grace. That’s a picture of what God has done for us. Friends, He determined the price. Now we can begin to live our life as we were bought with a price. What does that mean? It means you think differently so you can live differently. You start to view yourself differently so that you can live out your life differently. That’s why communion is so important. We come together on first Wednesday, ten days from now, we’ll gather on Wednesday night. We’ll take communion, the bread and the cup that represent Christ’s broken body and His blood that shed for us. Do you know what we do in that moment? We remember the price. That was the price that was paid for us. Do you know what is cool about communion? You don’t do anything. Do you know what you do with communion? You receive it.
Do you know what you do with God’s love? You receive it. You don’t earn it. You can’t achieve it. You can’t accomplish it. You don’t score keep it. You receive it. You begin to live as one who has been bought by a price. It means you hold your head up a little higher. You can even kick your shoulders back a little bit. Why? Because you were bought with a price. It means you stop telling yourself in your inner voice that you are worthless and you’re meaningless and you’re awful and God hates you - because He doesn’t. Because you were bought with a price. You start looking in the mirror in the morning and say, “You were bought with a price. Yes, you right there. You were bought with a price. Uh-huh. Look at that!” You look at yourself and say, “I may not look all that great but I’m bought with a price and that’s good enough for me. I’ll take it.” Then go out the door with this sense of esteem that’s not based in ourselves but based in God. It’s not a proud thing like, “Ooooh, I’m great.” It’s He’s great! He was willing to pay the price for me. You live like you were bought with a price.
Then you begin to respond to God with action. That’s my third point. You respond to God with action in our lives. Respond to Him with action. In fact, when you look at the book of Hosea in chapter three you see that Hosea goes and buys Gomer back. He takes her back to be with him but there is some action that follows this grace. We see it in 3:3: “Then I told her that you are to live with me many days and you must not be a prostitute or be intimate with any man and I will live with you.” He doesn’t just go and take her back and say, “Do whatever you want and be my wife.” No, there are some qualifications here. No longer be a prostitute. No longer be intimate with a man. You can live with me. Then God shifts in one sentence and applies it to His people. He says, “For the Israelites will live many days with out king or prince without sacrifice or sacred stones without ephod or idol.” What is God saying? They’ll live many days with me as their lord rather than worshiping all these other things that they get caught up in. They are going to live many days as me as their master and king. They will live with me. That’s awesome. God wants to be that kind of God in our lives.
At Central we have worked really hard. We have asked ourselves questions like with so much noise in our world and so much going on, you guys hear so many messages in a given day. In all the noise in society what does it really mean? How do we as a church partner with people to help you respond to God with action in your life? We have boiled it down to three simple things. You’ll hear these a lot. One, is to plug into God and each other in our weekend services. I just believe that church attendance is something we all mark on the calendar. Some weeks you’ll think I’m good. Some weeks you’ll think I stink. Some weeks you’ll be mad at me. That’s okay. We show up. Why? Because God meets us in the community of believers, in the worship, the music, and the prayer. We just show up because of who He is. That consistency will make a difference in our lives. That’s why we are invitation people. We’ve handed out fifty thousand invitations already to our kick-off weekend coming up September 9/10. That’s adults. Our children, as young as can possibly be to our student ministries – they all have their own invite cards. They’ve invited another twenty thousand kids and students to be here for that kick-off weekend. What do we do? We printed more. As you leave today there are more invitations. They are at the exits. You can grab them. There are five or six that are stuck in the envelopes to give life away. We had a guy come last week and showed up. He said, “My nephew came and gave me an invitation to church.” He said, “I just felt like it was something that was important to him and he cared enough about me to invite me.” He came that Sunday morning and sought out one of our pastors to say it was an awesome experience to have his nephew invite him to church. You’ll never know what a simple invitation can do. It’s not about us, friends, it’s about God. It’s about His grace. It’s about this love that will not let us go. This love that pursues people and cares about people and wants to redeem them or buy them back by having them recognize and accept this free gift of God and His grace in their lives. If you haven’t already given them out, if these are stacked up under your car seat or collecting dust, I know how it goes, let’s bring them up to the front and remember. Let’s take them and get them out into the community so that God can use a simple tool to reach people. That’s why we are launching a Summerlin campus on the other side of town so that we can reach more people so they can experience life change and people can be helped. Plug into God and others in our weekend services.
Two, charge up to become like Christ in our small group environments and on First Wednesday. You charge up to become like Christ. You gather with a group of people who are meeting in homes, in coffee houses, in restaurants around our valley, talking about their faith, talking about what God is doing. They are praying for one another. You may have jumped in a small group and it was weird or didn’t connect with you – I understand that. Sometimes our expectations are up here and the small group experience might be right here. I would just encourage you to keep trying and keep jumping in. Find a group of people that can watch your back and pray for you and walk the road of life with you. Don’t try to do it alone. You don’t have to. Charge up to become like Christ in a small group environment.
Then three, live out your faith by serving in the church and in the community. Live out your faith by serving in the church. This week we are going to see a lot of Katrina footage on the news as we remember this hurricane and the disaster that it brought. When I see the footage I’m always reminded not just of the fact that there was a hurricane but of the fact that the Central family was there from the very beginning, making a difference. We partnered with Celebration church in helping people. You were there. This summer there were teams, three or four of them, of eight to twelve, singles and couples who went and served in Katrina. They picked up a hammer and helped rebuild and helped make a difference. They fed, one day one group fed four hundred people – in one day. They are making a difference serving there. We live out our faith whether in a simple way or in a large way.
Plug into God and others on the weekend. Charge up to become like Christ in small group environments and live out your faith while you are serving. If we do those things we’re responding to God with action. I think of Victor Hugo’s, Les Miserable, It was a powerful book and then there was a movie made on the book. There is a scene in that movie that I’ll never forget. Jean Valjean is a criminal. He’s been in prison for twenty years because he stole a piece of bread when he was starving. After twenty years of hard labor, suffering he gets out but he’s not really accustomed to being free. He meets this pastor, this bishop along the way who is nice enough to take him into his house and let him sleep there. He feeds them at his own table. He shows them kindness. But that night, he gives into his past. He leaves the house. As he leaves he steals some of the Bishop’s silver. He goes out into the night. As he goes out, the authorities eventually catch him. They take him back to the Bishop. There is this scene where the Bishop comes out. Some of you will remember this. It’s so powerful. He looks at Jean Valjean who is literally waiting for his words that will send him back to prison for the rest of his life – his entire life. He will never wake up a free man again. This is his last chance and he stole the silver. They say to the Bishop, “We found this silver in his bags. It belongs to you. We’re assuming he stole this from you.” The Bishop looks at him and says, “No. No, this was a gift. This was my gift to him. Jean Valjean what you forgot is the most important thing. You forgot the silver candlesticks too.” He takes the silver candlesticks and he gives them to him. There is this dumbfounded look on the face of this criminal who has only known hate and violence for the last twenty years. He’s shown kindness. He takes the candlesticks in his hands. The authorities walk away. I think the most memorable scene in the movie and the book is when that priest walks over and puts his hand on Jean Valjean’s shoulder, looks him in the eyes and says, “You must never forget this moment. You are not your own. You were bought with a price. Now you live toward God.” Basically he says, “I bought you. You live toward God now.” Jean Valjean was marked by that moment for the rest of his life. He was never able to get over it. He was never able to go back from that place. In fact, he lived a completely different life from that moment on because he lived as if he was bought with a price. Victor Hugo is weaving into his story biblical imagery by the boatloads.
Because that’s exactly what the story of Hosea and the story of Jesus tell us today. You and I were bought with a price. We are not our own. We live towards God now. We live towards Him. That’s what defines us. Some of you are here today and maybe you never really accepted the free gift of salvation that God offers to you. Maybe you’ve never taken that step to say, “I believe in you. I trust you. Will you forgive me for my sins and help me move forward in my life?” Maybe you are sitting here and you know God is tapping you on the shoulder even right now. You know that he’s moving in your life. You know that you are not here by accident. Friends, I want to give you the opportunity to cross the line of faith to ask God to come into your life and do a work. And he will. He’ll forgive you. He’ll help you and walk with you. Friends, in this moment I want to ask you to set aside fear. I want to ask you to take a risk. Set aside any sense of uncertainty. You may still have questions. That’s okay. If God is tugging on your heart, and you know if he is, respond to it. I think the first step is the hardest. After that you’ll begin to experience his move and his work in your life. Would you bow your heads and close your eyes?