Thursday, May 30, 2013

Redeemed by the Blood of the Lamb

Dear Austin,

My grandmother used to have a favorite song that she always wanted to sing for others in Sacrament Meeting.  It was a song called "Redeemed".  I may have written about it before but it points out that the singer is "Redeemed by the blood of the Lamb".  Especially after my last post, I have something to write about being redeemed from.

Last week was pretty tough.  When I wrote the post to Magdalene, I felt about as low as I'd felt in a very long time.  I could have been very content to go live under a rock somewhere, and forget all our financial worries.  Having felt ridiculously horrible I called a friend and asked for some help.  I was given some very wise counsel, which helped me arise from my stupor of depression.

Interestingly enough, the next day something incredible happened.  I got to attend a field trip with Magdalene to a butterfly museum.  The day was hot and sticky, and sitting on a bus with 45 screaming first graders was not what I expected.  However I got to observe and enjoy the beauty of butterflies while chaperoning 6 very unique children.  It was enough to stress me out, to say the least.

However I took a few pictures, and shared them with my friend.  It was pointed out to me, that the butterfly is representative of "transformation".  When I arrived home from the trip, I had received an unexpected bill.  Several months before, I had applied for "charity aid" to cover the remainder of my hospital bill from when my appendix had been removed last November.  I hadn't heard anything since a month or two ago, so receiving the bill signaled that I had not qualified for the assistance.  One more bill to add to the pile.

But my heart was calm.  I wasn't worried, and I knew God would take care of me.  I had been transformed, from even just the day before.

Opening up the bill, I saw the $13,000+ amount due for hospital services.  I also knew there was another one sitting somewhere in my home which was $500+ for the physician's bill.  Flipping the bill over, I found the number for the financial services department.  I figured if anything, I'd better get on a payment plan; first though, I would inquire about what happened with the charitable thing.

When I spoke with Todd, he put me on hold for a few minutes.  I started cleaning the kitchen while I waited.  He came back on, and said something that was half cut off.  "What?" I asked him.  "The charges are dropped.  You owe nothing," he said.

Shut the heck up.  WHAT???  The charges are cleared???  We qualified.  $13,500+ in medical bills were wiped completely away.  It was as if we had won the lottery.  (Your dad had actually purchased a ticket a few nights prior.  It was the first time I was ever glad he did.)  But this was better.  I knew this came straight from the hand of God.  I cried, but this time, as opposed to the day before, they were tears of sheer joy.

I have heard my friend say that we must know the bitterness of hell to understand the joys of heaven.  That was indeed the case.  I don't know that I've ever felt such pure love from Christ as I have last week.  It would take us months, if not years to pay off that bill.  We could have not done it without a miracle.  Receiving this miracle was one of the most powerful feelings in the world.  It made feeling poor entirely worth it, to know that what I experienced was completely, sheerly, wholly the goodness and complete MERCY of GOD.  There is no other way around it.  God is so, so, so, so good.

Redeemed by the blood of the Lamb.  I cannot even begin to fathom, when all is said and done, and we meet God at His judgment bar, how incredible it will feel to know that we will be redeemed from sin because of the work of redemption He has given to us.  What an incredible, priceless gift that not even money can buy.


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