This post is different from what I normally do. I just want to share from my heart. I promised to be real and authentic, so this is me doing that.
This past Sunday at church was an amazing time of worship. My family was all off serving in other areas, so I was sitting alone. The amazing thing was that the Holy Spirit was moving in my heart so powerfully. I was singing out the songs so loud with tears streaming down my face, songs that I’ve sang hundreds of times, but had renewed meaning, had such power in the words. I’m sure the people in front of me were annoyed, but I didn’t care. My worship was between me and God alone.
As I was singing and praying, I was thinking – how many times have I gone through the motions? How many times have I sung the words and not even been paying attention to what I was singing? How many times have I been worried about singing too loud or letting the tears fall because I didn’t want to be embarrassed? How many times have I ignored the prompting of the Spirit because what he was calling me to do was out of my comfort zone?
Well, you know what? God didn’t call us to be comfortable. Jesus didn’t promise a life of ease when we follow him. But what he does promise is eternal life with him in Heaven. He promises to be with us and never leave us. He promises that his plans for us are good.
We sang beautiful songs that day about God’s grace; about Jesus’ sacrifice, and our freedom in that. We sang about being children of God and about being chosen. Am I free in that? Are you? Do we really believe it? Or have you stepped only halfway in. God is there and he’s saying,
“If you would just step in, all in. If you would trust me, you would see what I’m going to do, what my plans are for you and they’re good. If you would just jump in, I will be right there and I will radically move in and through you.”
God wants all of me, he wants all of you. But he doesn’t demand that we follow him, that we surrender to his plan for us. He gives us free will; he doesn’t want us following him out of compulsion. You know, Jesus also had free will. He could have said no to the cross; he could have walked away, but he chose to lay his life down. And he chose to lay it down for a sinner like me and like you. In John 10:18, Jesus said,
“No one can take my life from me. I sacrifice it voluntarily. For I have the authority to lay it down when I want to and also to take it up again. For this is what my Father has commanded.”
Are we willing to surrender as Jesus did to the will of the Father? Are we willing to trust him? Do we believe that what he says is true? There’s no middle ground here. We either believe or we don’t. We either trust or we don’t. There’s no shallow end. It’s all or nothing. I love the passage in Ephesians that says,
When we read passages like this one, and like John 3:16 that says, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” It’s easy to just think of humanity as a whole and not take these words personally. But Jesus died for me personally and he died for you personally. For who you are right now – in your mess, in your sin, in your grief. Wherever you are in life or faith, Christ died for you.
So, I’m going to write the passage from Ephesians again, but this time, I’m going to replace the word, “us”, with “me”. So, I want you to read it and know that this is for you personally.
That is so beautiful, so powerful. So, I’ll ask again. Do you believe it? Jesus freely laid down his life, he freely surrendered because he loves us that much. I don’t understand it, but I am so grateful, so grateful.
So, what is your choice? You have to choose. There are 2 sides, it’s black and white. No gray areas. What will you choose?
For me, I’m choosing to say, “you have my whole heart God, my whole life. Everything is on the table. Here I am God, I lay it all down. Whatever you want to do with my life, it’s all yours. I give you everything that I am.”
I pray this was an encouragement to you and that you jump all in, without hesitation. God is so good. You won’t regret it!
December 15, 2022
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