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Saturday, December 23, 2006

The Messiah


The other evening Denbigh and I were invited to a most exquisite Christmas party at the home of the Mohon family. It was refreshing and beyond lovely. As we were departing, a gift was handed to us. That gift was Handel's Messiah. I have been in love with this oratorio since a friend played violin in it several years back. This year the Holy Spirit kept telling me to get a copy and I was just about to buy it off ITunes when the generous Mohons handed us the cd set. Marcus Mohon always has a great story (that is beautifully embellished to get you excited) to accompany everything. He was telling us how Handel composed the Messiah. If you know me, you know I had to study up on the story. What I read I know is the message the Holy Spirit had for me when He told me to seek out the Messiah (and was so graciously handed it by the Mohons)...

Over the last few months, I have been terribly discouraged, attacked, and beat down by the enemy. This enemy has been using Christians to do his work and I have become quite familiar with what I look like at the end of myself. All of this is on the tails of and in the midst of great spiritual victory and breakthrough. God has opened up many new avenues for me to minister. More cunning and hateful than our enemy is how powerful and romantic our Lord God is. I have sought out the Messiah and in no way found him wanting....

As I read the story of Handel, I was greatly encouraged. In the year before Handel composed the Messiah he performed what he believed to be his last oratorio. He was discouraged, knee deep in debt, and ready to hang it all up. If you are unfamiliar with The Messiah, it has been lauded as the greatest muscial score of all time. The opportunity to write this piece for charity was given to Handel with much support from a wealthy benefactor. Personal attack ensued him by the church for performing this religious piece in a secular venue. Church people were attacking him. (I read once that the only place Jesus ever got into a fight was at church with religious people. Irony.) The beautiful part to me is how Handel composed this piece in 24 days. A friend came to his door at the end of writing it and found Handel weeping uncontrollably. He said it was such a rich experience that he did not know if he had composed it while in his body or out. Years after it's inception there was an article written about the famed Messiah and it's generous composer who gave most all the funding to charity. It read:The Messiah has housed more poor, clothed more naked, and fed more hungry than any other score in all musical history. The Messiah did.

The church he attended called him a radical. You could find him there every Sunday on his face weeping. He was discouraged and beat down and that is the moment God used him to do the most powerful work of his life.

  • Read More about Handel


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