I had dinner with a friend last night and in the course of our conversation she simply said: “Isn’t it interesting that the sign of maturity in the Christian walk is becoming like a child?”
Feed me. Clothe me. Bathe me. These are simple requirements in the life of a child.
Give unto me my daily bread. That was the prayer of Jesus Christ. I only do what my Daddy does. Those are essentially the words of Jesus (John 5:19) as he is trying to convey his way of life on earth, so that we can do the same.
In the natural world we live in, the sign of maturity is independence. But in the Kingdom of God, everything is opposite. The sign of maturity is greater dependence – total dependence.
My every breath is yours. That is the posture of our hearts which the Father is after.
In these days, I am learning to depend on Him. I am learning to become like a child again. It is more painful than I expected – putting to death my self-reliance. Learning to live the words of this prayer of Jesus: “Give us this day our daily bread…Lead me not into temptation but deliver me from evil.”
I often find myself asking the Lord for wisdom: Lead me not into temptation, or folly and foolish thinking. I am so capable of deceiving myself, especially when I think I know what I’m doing. I have no idea. I need his wisdom. I need his recue from prideful, self-sufficient thinking. Deliver me from evil, the snares and traps set for me of my own will and selfish ambition.
A recurring theme for me in these days has been the picture of the suffering, bleeding Christ on the cross – giving his life for me – and from that rugged cross asking me: “Will you give your life for me? Will you give up your life for me? Will you pick up your cross and follow me?”
And I am confronted with the things I’ve told the Lord are hands-off: MINE.
My job. My ministry. My house. My car. My life. Hands-off. You work on this part over here, but don’t mess with this one over there. That’s mine.
In these months of walking out my decision to leave my full-time job and fully launch Unveiled; at some key decision points to keep moving forward in obedience to where I feel him leading, the Lord has prompted me with this question: Am I worth it?
Is he worth everything that I have? Is he worth the sacrifice? Is he worth reputation? Is he worth all of my possessions? Will I boast in the provision of the Lord or will I boast in my own provision?
His call will cost us something.
(I have to admit it but I was actually searching the scriptures for an alternate route: “Is there anyone in the Bible who has walked out their calling without great sacrifice? Can I please find it somewhere in the Scripture, or even in the people that I know?!?” I know. It’s hilarious. I was not successful.)
There is no other route. His call will cost us something.
He wants it all. The lover of our souls wants all of our affection. He wants our whole lives.
The Lord is asking for your life so that he can come with resurrection power to fulfill his purposes for your life. He wants it all. He has not come for part of it. He’s come for all of it. He gave it all. He wants it all.
I think it’s appropriate to ask the Lord: “What’s my all? What am I holding on to so tightly? What am I most afraid that you’ll take?”
There is nothing sweeter than to let the Lord take your most prized possessions. There is no sweeter place. Because you find out that what you want most, is him. He is our great reward. This makes no sense until you give to him what is most prized to you. And you discover: Jesus is worth every thing. There is nothing that he is not worth.
I want to encourage you right here as I’m standing in the middle of this unfinished story – it never looks pretty in the middle of the story – to open your hearts to the invitation of the Lord to give him your all. Whatever that might look like for you – this is not prescriptive, it’s different for each of us. But ask him the question: “What are you inviting me to lay down, that I may discover my heart’s desire is you?”
Jesus, our very great Reward.