C. Austin Miles was a pharmacist in 1912. Photography was his hobby, and “he found his darkroom perfect for developing, not just his photographs, but his devotional life. In its privacy and strange blue glow, Miles could read his Bible in total privacy. One day in March 1912, while waiting for some film to develop, he opened the Bible to his favorite chapter, John 20, the story of the first Easter. Miles later said, ‘As I read it that day, I seemed to be part of the scene…My hands were resting on the Bible while I stared at the light blue wall. As the light faded, I seemed to be standing at the entrance of the garden, looking down a gently winding path, shaded by olive branches. A woman in white, with head bowed, hand clasping her throat as if to choke back her sobs, walked slowly into the shadows. It was Mary. As she came to the tomb, upon which she placed her hand, she bent over to look in and hurried away. John, in flowing robe, appeared, looking at the tomb; then came Peter, who entered the tomb, followed slowly by John. As they departed, Mary reappeared, leaning her head upon her arm at the tomb. She wept, Turning herself, she saw Jesus standing; so did I. I knew it was He. She knelt before Him, with arms outstretched and looking into his face, cried, Rabboni! I awakened in full light, gripping my Bible, with muscles tense and nerves vibrating. Under the inspiration of this vision I wrote as quickly as the words would be formed the poem exactly as it has since appeared. That same evening I wrote the music.” – C. Austin Miles, Then Sings My Soul, Robert J. Morgan, Thomas J. Nelson, 2003.
When is the last time you allowed Scripture to pour forth into you and through you. Whether you write inspirational songs or words because of the inspiration, draw beautiful scenes, or not is not the point. Allowing Scripture to speak to us, fill our souls with excitement for the miracles and mercies that come from our faith, and allow that joy to keep a flame of light burning within us and to illuminate our darkness. This world is tough and we suffer throughout our lives, but as Christians we have a source of Hope. Allowing our Savior to talk to us and hear his voice falling on our ears, telling us we are His own, allowing our hearts to ring and sing, and inspire us to share this Hope with others…
I come to the garden alone,
While the dew is still on the roses,
And the voice I hear falling on my ear
The Son of God discloses.
And He walks with me, and He talks with me,
And He tells me I am His own;
And the joy we share as we tarry there,
None other has ever known.
He speaks, and the sound of His voice
Is so sweet the birds hush their singing,
And the melody that He gave to me
Within my heart is ringing
I’d stay in the garden with Him,
Though the night around me be falling,
But He bids me go; through the voice of woe
His voice to me is calling.
His voice to me is calling…
Thank you Precious Lord for calling my name. Thank you that I hear your voice and know you are my Shepherd talking to me! I am your sheep in a flock of many, and yet you love me. You give me new mercies each morning and forgive all my sins. You allow me peace I do not understand. You bless me beyond what I can think or imagine. You give me strength to do all things so very far beyond my limitations, fears, and weaknesses. You know me. You walk with me. You talk to me. You love me. You love me.
John 10:27 “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.”
Philippians 4:13 “I can do all things through him who strengthens me.”
Now on the first day of the week Mary Magdalene came to the tomb early, while it was still dark, and saw that the stone had been taken away from the tomb. 2 So she ran and went to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved, and said to them, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they have laid him.” 3 So Peter went out with the other disciple, and they were going toward the tomb. 4 Both of them were running together, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. 5 And stooping to look in, he saw the linen cloths lying there, but he did not go in. 6 Then Simon Peter came, following him, and went into the tomb. He saw the linen cloths lying there, 7 and the face cloth, which had been on Jesus’1 head, not lying with the linen cloths but folded up in a place by itself. 8 Then the other disciple, who had reached the tomb first, also went in, and he saw and believed; 9 for as yet they did not understand the Scripture, that he must rise from the dead. 10 Then the disciples went back to their homes.
Jesus Appears to Mary Magdalene
11 But Mary stood weeping outside the tomb, and as she wept she stooped to look into the tomb. 12 And she saw two angels in white, sitting where the body of Jesus had lain, one at the head and one at the feet. 13 They said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping?” She said to them, “They have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid him.” 14 Having said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing, but she did not know that it was Jesus. 15 Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you seeking?” Supposing him to be the gardener, she said to him, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away.” 16 Jesus said to her, “Mary.” She turned and said to him in Aramaic ,“Rabboni!” (which means Teacher). 17 Jesus said to her, “Do not cling to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father; but go to my brothers and say to them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’” 18 Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, “I have seen the Lord”—and that he had said these things to her.
Chaplain Kim Crawford-Meeks