Addicted to the Glory

by Chad Taylor

I will never forget the first time I stepped out of my grandfather’s house after being saved and taking the love that had just exploded in my heart to the streets. From house to house I went, knocking on every door with the line, “Do you want to talk about Jesus?!” Then finally going back to the same neighborhood where I, just days before, was dealing drugs and peddling stolen jewelry for cocaine. Dozens of kids, drug dealers, and junkies gathered around to hear this strange sound, “Jesus loves you man…” I will never forget watching these people bow down on the concrete in broad day light and ask Jesus in their hearts even as I did hours before. Sobbing and crying out to the Lord right there on the streets. Grown men and women smitten by a Power that transcended all despair and sin piercing heart and soul. The manifest presence of the Lord that could cause skeptics to be transformed into saints. Prostitutes into princesses. Rebels into righteous radicals. I was becoming addicted to the glory of God.

I witnessed this in the first few days of my salvation experience with Jesus. I became hooked to the passion and power of the Lord as waitresses bowed at the end of the table and accepted Him as Lord and Master. As hardened criminals sat at the foot of the cell bed and wept like babies and repented from their sins. Like a junkie sticks a needle into his vein for that jolt, that rush, I became a junkie for the demonstration of Jesus’ love and power as it came into contact with a stranger and sinner. I was hooked. I was addicted.

Jesus was not just a systematic theology, He was a living and breathing Person, anxious to share His love to the world! He was not lethargic and full of ritual and repetition. He was excited and spontaneous in His expression of the Father’s love. I found myself quickly following His lead. I remember in the excitement of it all jumping from my Christian friend’s car, running toward a guy walking down the street, yelling and waving, “Jesus loves you man! Jesus really loves you!” Later that night the same guy told the church that he was on his way to kill another man who was messing with his girlfriend! That impulsive encounter literally saved a life! I was addicted. Forever hooked on the power of God when darkness and light collide. When a broken hardened heart accepts Jesus’ love. 

Once after spending most of the night from street corner to street corner preaching in downtown Seattle, we started making our way back home. When we hit 1st Ave. and Pioneer Square we stopped the car and got out for a moment to pray and ask God’s blessing on our evening. It was around 4 in the morning. My friend David began softly singing Amazing Grace. As we reached the chorus suddenly a dozen or more street people crawled from the bushes and came from the shadows to lock hand in hand and sing the song, “…how sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me…I once was blind but now I see….” We were stunned as this misfit choir awoke to His glory and came to lift their voices and praise Him at 4 in the morning downtown Seattle! With only the angels and Heaven to witness this divine assembly. We were addicted to the awesome glory of the Lord.

I believe that is what Paul meant when he exclaimed, “Woe is me if I preach not the gospel!” Those are the words of an addict. Someone overcome with a Thing, a Person, a Power that flows through mere human hands to open blind eyes and raise dead bodies. Paul was addicted to the glory of God. “This one thing I do” Paul said, “I forget the things that are behind me and reach forward to what lies ahead of me. I strive for the upward call in Christ Jesus…” Paul was addicted to the glory of God. An addict can never have enough. He always needs more. As his tolerance level rises he is forced to feed his habit an increased amount of that substance. It is no wonder then that Paul exhorted, “But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory…” (2nd Cor. 3:18). One taste was not enough, one encounter with a crippled person was not enough, one confrontation in the synagogue did not satisfy his craving, he had to have more! Paul was an addict. Forever hooked on the glory and power of His Master Jesus Christ. God give us an army of them!

If your relationship and devotion to the Lord has become predictable and boring, I dare you then to find a stranger anywhere and share the Love that the Lord has so abundantly shed abroad in your heart! Give away what has been freely given to you and you too will find yourself hooked on this glory that can in seconds turn a derelict into a disciple. A pimp into a preacher, a beggar into a prophet. Break out of the conformed walls of your religion and begin to shout from the housetops what Jesus has whispered in your hearts! Let the whole world know what He has done for you! And in that very moment you will become an addict of his glory as so many already are! 

You too will shout with a voice of triumph and the sound of singing will be heard in the streets of your city or town! A river of revival will flow from your heart and wash away the needles and beer cans that litter our streets and neighborhoods. Only then will we see the harvest that our hearts have longed for. Only then will we witness the power and glory of God shake the land as in days of old. God give us an army of addicts, addicted to your glory, that cannot sleep or rest until they have seen your power and passion shake this nation. Let the fire of your desire burn in their veins until they have fully satisfied that craving for more of You. Meet them Lord, meet them on the hi-ways and bi-ways and show them your glory…

Chad Taylor