Sunday, December 11, 2011

Just As I Am

"Just As I Am" is by Fernando Ortega off of his latest CD, "Come Down O Love Divine".  Fernando had performed this hymn as a young artist, but this was a new melody and arrangement for this his latest project.  The music and the lyrics are stunning and soul moving.  They also have a similarity to the words St. Therese chose in the longer version of her Offering to Merciful Love.

Fernando dedicated the song to Billy Graham and there is a section in the song when we hear briefly from Billy Graham.  Here are the lyrics:

I waited and waited for God

He turned and He heard me
He lifted me out of the mud
His own hand secured me
The Lord is my strength
I will not be confounded
So I have focused my face like a flint
I'll not be ashamed
Lord I come

Just as I am

Without one plea
But that Your blood
Was shed for me

Take the days that remain in my life

Lord, let me serve You
While there is breath on my lips
I would proclaim You
I long for Your return
I long to see You face to face
I long to join the eternal song
Communion of all the saints

Just as I am

Without one plea
But that Your blood
Was shed for me

St. Therese's Offering to Merciful Love (long version)
Since You loved me so much as to give me Your only Son as my Savior and my Spouse, the infinite treasures of His merits are mine. I offer them to You with gladness, begging You to look upon me only in the Face of Jesus and in His heart burning with Love. . . . 

After earth's Exile, I hope to go and enjoy You in the Fatherland, but I do not want to lay up merits for heaven. I want to work for Your Love alone with the one purpose of pleasing You, consoling Your Sacred Heart, and saving souls who will love You eternally.

In the evening of this life, I shall appear before You with empty hands, for I do not ask You, Lord, to count my works. All our justice is stained in Your eyes. I wish, then, to be clothed in Your own Justice and to receive from Your Love the eternal possession of Yourself. I want no other Throne, no other Crown but You, my Beloved!

We can only confess that Jesus is Lord (see 1 Corinthians 12:3) or call God, "Abba", Father (see Galatians 4:6) in the Holy Spirit.  Our faith itself, our confession of faith, our realization that Jesus is Lord, and through the shedding of his Precious Blood we have the Holy Spirit to teach us to call out Abba--Our Father, all of it is gift.  Lord, make us truly thankful!

We will show up empty handed just like St. Therese, Great Saint that she is!
We know we have nothing to boast of
that our hope of salvation came from God, Our Father, 
not sparing his only Son, 
and that Son in obedience and love
became incarnate of a woman, 
full of grace, conceived without sin because of God her Savior, 
and this Son, revealed his Father to us,
taught us to pray, Our Father, 
taught us how to love, how to show mercy and compassion, 
how to forgive, he suffered betrayal, humiliation, bodily and soul wrenching torment, 
and then laid his life down for us his friends, 
and every drop of his Precious Blood ran from his pierced side, His Sacred Heart.  Jesus, I do Trust in You.  Jesus I thank you that you thirst for me.  Increase my thirst, increase my love for you.

After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no man could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands,and crying out with a loud voice, "Salvation belongs to our God who sits upon the throne, and to the Lamb!"  And all the angels stood round the throne and round the elders and the four living creatures, and they fell on their faces before the throne and worshiped God, saying, "Amen! Blessing and glory and wisdom and thanksgiving and honor and power and might be to our God for ever and ever! Amen."  Then one of the elders addressed me, saying, "Who are these, clothed in white robes, and whence have they come?"  I said to him, "Sir, you know." And he said to me, "These are they who have come out of the great tribulation; they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.  (Revelation 7:9-14)

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