“Here’s your all access pass.” Such were the words from The Big Kahuna of Women of Faith, as she gave my friend, Liz, and me “All Access” passes to wear throughout an arena in Columbus, Ohio, this past August. Whoa!
Are you kidding me? You mean we can go backstage, we can enter thru’ any door, we can go anywhere? You really trust us? (Even better, we don’t have to stand in line for the bathroom???)
I was already a tad giddy from dining with the speakers for that weekend. Look with me around our table: There sat Marilyn Meburg, Patsy Clairmont, Brenda Warner, Mark Lowry, Sandi Patty, Lisa Harper, Mandisa, and Amy Grant.
Not only did we eat dinner with them, we got to pray with them beforehand and ultimately hear from each of them during the two-day conference. While I’m not a fan of the word “surreal”, that’s flat how it was. Oh, and they seated us on the second row. (Did I mention the bag of chocolates the speakers kept passing back and forth??? Slice of heaven!)
I’m sure the question now burning in your head is “Exactly HOW did you get to do this?” Just so happens my “friend named Liz”, who is truly a very dear, long-time friend and mentor of mine, is none other than Liz Curtis Higgs, author and speaker extraordinaire.
Liz would be joining Women of Faith the following weekend and wanted to go to the event as an attendee to get a feel for the program. She invited me to go with her and well, really, who could refuse that?
Great speakers, meaningful teaching, over-the-top worship, staying up into the wee hours of the night talking, plus the road trip from Louisville to Columbus and back, made for a 100% blast-of-a-weekend. Not to mention a favorite memory in our friendship journey!
While sporting our “All Access” passes, it occurred to me that each and every one of us, who believes in our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, the Son of God, dying on the cross for each and every one of us, taking on our sins, and giving us His mercy and grace, has an “All Access” pass to the Kingdom, our Heavenly home.
John Stott, in his book Cross of Christ, said, “Until you see the cross as that which is done by you, you will never appreciate that it is done for you.” Let that thought soak in for a minute…Stott also said, “The cross is the blazing fire at which the flame of our love is kindled, but we have to get near enough for its sparks to fall on us.” Getting near enough equals one thing: all access.
So while the “all access” passes made us feel pretty special, let’s not forget our final destination. Eternal life: far more important than simply attending a conference here on earth! Romans 5:1-2 tells us “…we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into the grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God.” Don’t miss this!
We are therefore able, as Hebrews 4:16 says, to “approach the throne of grace with confidence…” ALL ACCESS. Take your pass and run with it.
‘Til next time!
(This October 14th,2012 entry is dedicated to a brave, new friend. This inspirational guy received a call to the ministry while working in the corporate world. He left all of that behind, attended and graduated from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary!!! After numerous meetings, hours upon hours of prayer, he and several others started a new church. His name? Jay Roy. His church? Throne of Grace. Kudos to Jay and Liz and their two girls as well as to their new congregation, two members of which, happen to be some more brave soldiers: our brother and sister-in-law, Billy and Marte Hoagland. Please add Throne of Grace to your prayer list. Check them out on Facebook: Throne of Grace Community Church.)