My debts, my sin, my shame — I’ve been aware of the gap between who I am and who I want to be for as long as I can remember. Because of what Jesus did, I can stand. But I’ve also always known that the story doesn’t end there.
There’s another story behind a song like Calvary, and it has to do with a quote from C.S. Lewis. He’s the one who pointed out that, ‘seeds grow in dark places’. If you ask me there is no better illustration of his words than what happened on the cross. It was there – in the torture of separation from God – that new life was found, for all of us.
So many times God has worked this way. Remember the words about how God’s ‘compassions never fail. They are new every morning’ [Lamentations 3:22-23]? Those lines were written in a dark place too; Jerusalem was rubble, its people enslaved and exiled. Yet God stilled his anger and sparked his compassion, and out of the darkness of slavery and defeat came a new dependence on Him.
Calvary is the story of the law colliding with grace. It’s the story of you and I not getting what we deserve. It’s the story of hope emerging from the darkness and new life thriving in spite of sin. It’s a story of our mistakes and His mercy, our debts and His ransom, our separation and His victory. Calvary covers it all.