An Ocean of Grace by Tim Chester
Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God. Hebrews 12:1-2
In the days and weeks leading up to Christmas we spend time celebrating Advent. It's that special time of waiting, expecting, and celebrating the arrival of Christ. As Easter is drawing near, we also want to practice that same focused commitment to waiting and expectation of the celebration of the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ. Remember that the Easter story is the completion of the Christmas story!
A helpful tool to reach that goal of focusing on the arrival of Easter over the next few weeks is a wonderful book called An Ocean of Grace by Tim Chester. This INCREDIBLE collection of writings from across the ages of church history will draw your heart and mind to the cross. There are daily readings which begin on February 17th (Wednesday) and they run through Easter Sunday.
Here's an excerpt from the book's introduction:
"To help fix our gaze on Jesus, we are surrounded by "a great cloud of witnesses". For the first readers of Hebrews, these witnesses were the saints of the Old Testament, whose faith in God's promises had sustained them through troubling times and had enabled them to achieve great things in God's name. But as readers today, we can add names from across the pages of church history to that crowd of cheering spectators. Two thousand years on, the cloud of witnesses is larger than ever. This book is an opportunity to hear their voices. It contains prayers and meditations from across the centuries of church history, all with a focus on the death and resurrection of Jesus.
The key think is that such people are " witnesses". Like the witness in a law court, they have evidence to present and in this case, their testimony concerns Jesus Christ. Their purpose is not to draw attention to themselves but to him. Their lives may inspire and their words may inform, but their true value is that they point us to Jesus."
We encourage you to get a copy and begin the daily readings this Wednesday. The books can be ordered from thegoodbook.com and from Amazon.