Psalms 40:3 He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God.
It’s interesting what a few hours and a procedure can do to the face. I began last Tuesday with a normal face and range of expressions. But as I neared the dental office around noon time my jaw became tight as the anxiety increased and tensions mounted. I knew I would be facing a double extraction to my rear molars and I dreaded it. Sure enough the extractions were involved and painful (despite the pain numbing shots). By the time I left I had no strength left, my fingers were as numb as my mouth from clenching the dental chair and my jaw looked like I’d been in a losing boxing match. How quickly the predominant facial expression changes. And oh how our facial expressions reveal both the anguishes’ and exhilaration’s or our lives. And yet over the years I have come to also believe as His face shine’s upon me—that my face reflects His inner work. It was Rubens a 17th Century artist who once said that with a single stroke of his brush he could change the facial expression of a weeping child into a laughing child—Jesus did that—with His brush strokes of forgiveness—of love—of freedom—of power—of his life giving message.
God invites us to see his face so he can change ours. He uses our uncovered faces to display his glory. The transformation is not easy. The sculptor of Mount Rushmore faced a lesser challenge than does God with some of us. But our Lord is up to the task. He loves to change the faces of his children. By his fingers, wrinkles of worry are rubbed away. Shadows of shame and doubt become portraits of grace and trust. He relaxes clenched jaws and smooths furrowed brows. His touch can remove the bags of exhaustion from beneath the eyes and turn tears of despair into tears of peace.
How does this happen? Many ways, but chief among them is through WORSHIP! I know you want something more complex from me, perhaps something more formulaic or demanding. Perhaps a forty-day fast or the memorization of the book of Numbers or something like that. But no I believe it’s simpler—I believe God changes our faces through worship. And if you really want to know more simply come to worship on Sunday…this Sunday…and any other given Sunday…and you will discover what I am talking about. God changes faces through worship—because He changes us—our hearts—when we truly worship. May the Lord make His face to shine upon you and give you His Peace. The Word of the Lord.