Chris Tomlin will likely never match the number of hymns written by the legendary Fanny J. Crosby, but it would seem he is trying. Honestly, it’s like every time we turn around there are the lyrics of another Tomlin-penned praise song being projected on screens for all to see and praise bands to butcher.
To make it worse, Chris Tomlin’s songs are often nothing more than re-worked hymns turned into catchier tunes. In other words, some of his biggest hits are songs so old they are now in the public domain – can I say “Amazing Grace”?
But there’s one song that, if any, I will not complain about. If anything, I will only complain about the people who usually sing “Here I Am to Worship,” for they rarely, if ever, do what they are singing in the lyrics.
Honestly, think about the words to the chorus and try to remember the last time you saw someone fall on his or her face.
“Here I am to worship. Here I am to bow down. Here I am to say that you’re my God.”Chris Tomlin
Why would they?
Why would anyone “bow down” in the middle of a song and worship God? It’s just a song, right? I mean, the lyrics are just symbolic or metaphorical, right?
“I’ll never know how much it cost to see my sin upon that cross. … No, I’ll never know how much it cost to see my sin upon that cross.”Chris Tomlin
Well, what if one actually got a vision, a vision to “see my sin upon that cross?”
Several years ago, while visiting a church in Kentucky where we used to attend, this song by Christ Tomlin was being sung by the congregation. As per custom, we all stood there reading the lyrics off the big screens up front (but with an awesome praise band) as we sang the song we had sung and heard a hundred times before.
It was then I received a curve ball, a brilliant move on the part of the tech crew who created the graphics being shown along with the lyrics to the song.
When it came to the part where we sang “I’ll never know how much it cost to see my sin upon that cross,” all of a sudden all kinds of sins began flashing across the screens. In a moment of clarity I recognized that I had been guilty of every one of them! Yes, I had been forgiven, but Jesus had to carry those sins – my sins – to the cross in order for ME to have eternal life.
I then became overwhelmed with brokenness and humility! I wasn’t judging anyone else, but I couldn’t believe that no one else was seeing what I was seeing! In that short, glorious moment I got a sense of what it cost, what it cost to save me, what it cost to “see my sin” upon that cross.
I stepped out of the row of seats where I was standing and literally fell on my face with my arms outstretched and wept. Every sin that I have ever committed – or will commit – was what Jesus Christ had to become in order to redeem me, in order to reconcile me with a Holy God.
He made the one who did not know sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.2 Corinthians 5:21 CSB
With this memory in mind, earlier this year I thought of what it might look like if Jesus had gone to the cross as “my sin.”
This is what I came up with.
I may have gotten the Scripture reference wrong on the painting, but the Truth remains the same . . .
Here I am to worship. Here I am to bow down. Here I am to say that You’re my God.