Music Monday: “Oh Lord, You’re Beautiful” by Chris Tomlin [Featuring Steffany

Music Monday: “Oh Lord, You’re Beautiful” by Chris Tomlin [Featuring Steffany Gretzinger] (song originally by Keith Green)

By Debbie Waltz

This week, I had the privilege of learning about the power of intercessory prayer in “When You Pray,” I was commiserating with a friend about how easily our prayers can become a laundry list of needs, rather than simply taking a moment to acknowledge God for Who He Is and the power He has at his disposal. I find it easier to intercede on other’s behalf than my own; I don’t know why. Maybe it’s because my needs seem selfish and too personal to say out loud.

No matter what your position on prayer is, Jada Edwards reminded me what a privilege it can be to intercede on someone’s behalf. Paul wrote about this privilege in the middle of his letter to the Ephesians church. During this period, tensions between the Jews and Gentiles were at an all-time high. Why? People considered the Jews to be “God’s Chosen people.” But Jesus’ sacrificial act on the cross changed all that. Despite this, the church still had difficulty loving one another and living together in unity. That’s why Paul found it necessary to remind them of their past.

Ephesians 2:3-5 says, “All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our flesh and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature, deserving of wrath. But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions – it is by grace you have been saved.”

Jesus not only lived out this unity during his ministry, but died to make it a reality. In Verses 14 -16 Paul continues, “For he himself is our peace, who has made the two groups one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility, by setting aside in his own flesh, the law was its commands and regulations. His purpose was to create in himself one new humanity out two, thus making peace and in one body to reconcile both of them to God, through the cross, by which he put to death their hostility.”

Such division in the Church still exists today; It affects our perspective on religion and its role in society. People who view God from a personal perspective perceive the church as a family. If we truly saw the church as a family, it would change not only the way we see our faith but impact our prayers. How? Because we recognize we are not praying on our own but in partnership with Jesus Christ who is the source of our strength. (Ephesians 3:16)

But to do that accurately, you must have experienced the reality of God’s love for yourself. The church of Ephesus did well at first; they worked hard, both preserving and enduring for the Lord’s sake. They did not tolerate evil, tested prophets, and found them to be liars. Still, they have not grown tired. However, Jesus did have one complaint against them in Revelation 2:5, he said, ” “But I have this against you: you have abandoned the love you had at first. Remember then how far you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first. Otherwise, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent.”

Chris Tomlin’s version of “Lord, You’re Beautiful” reminded me of the verse above. May we always be faithful, doing things for the right motives and not our own. May we always remember Christ our first love. We did not love Him first, but he loved us…

Chris Tomlin’s version of “Lord, You’re Beautiful.” can be accessed here


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