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July 30, 2020

I have touched on this before but am feeling called to emphasize something about my life. I have been pinned (in wrestling numerous times), have been in handcuffs, have been on a chain gang, have been incarcerated, have been hospitalized and have had the wind knocked out of me numerous times. What do they all have in common? It was like life and hope had been sucked out of me. But then freedom came…
“As a young man, John Newton was not a fan of church, or of God. He was a militant atheist, a bully, and a blasphemer. When he was eighteen, he was press-ganged into the navy, where he broke the rules so recklessly that he was publicly flogged for desertion. He then became a slave trader of the worst kind. He was hated and feared by his crewmates. John Newton delivered and dealt in cruelty and death. He altogether was a wild and angry young man. And then, at the age of twenty-three, Newton’s ship almost sank when it encountered a severe storm off the coast of Ireland. As the ship filled with water, Newton became increasingly desperate. Eventually, he called out to God, begging for help. God answered his prayer and saved him, and Newton knew it deep down.
John Newton began a totally new life. Eventually, he joined William Wilberforce in the campaign to abolish the slave trade, becoming a leading light in the campaign. His life had been transformed and healed. Today, Newton is best known as the author of the hymn ‘Amazing Grace’: ‘Through many dangers, toils and snares, I have already come; ‘tis grace has brought me safe thus far, and grace will lead me home.’ To be rescued is to be brought home, set free, delivered from danger, and protected from harm.
David said, ‘He brought me out into a spacious place; he rescued me because he delighted in me’ (2 Samuel 22:20). This is the story of our faith. Jesus has always been in the rescue business. It’s what He does.” (Bear Grylls, Soul Fuel)
“Amazing Grace” is my favorite hymn and the history behind it is amazing and inspirational. I am pretty sure that if I had continued on the path I was on, I would have died. However, in a way I did die but was rescued and came alive through Jesus Christ. Yes, Jesus is in the rescue business. Let him rescue you. God bless and God’s got this!

About Rev. Bud Budzinski

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