Yesterday as I was sitting in church listening to our pastor’s sermon, God began to convict me of something. The Scripture was based out of Mark 6: 1-5. This passage talks about how Jesus went to His hometown to preach. The people were impressed by His teaching, but were caught up in the fact that they knew His family and where He came from. They saw how ordinary He really was, and their focus was on His humanity so much so that they could not see that He was the Son of God. The Bible says that Jesus was amazed at their lack of faith, and it was because of this that He could not do many miracles in that town.
Pastor talked about the things that stand in the way of God’s desires. He asked, “If Jesus were standing here and speaking to you, would you hear Him? Would He be able to get through? What things in your life are you holding onto that keep Him from being able to do what He desires to do in your life?” Immediately my mind went to my situation and everything that I am doing to prepare to move to South America to be a missionary. I am in the process of downsizing nearly everything I own, but there was something that I was planning on keeping that God showed me was a stumbling block to Him in my life.
I love my movies and I love my TV shows. This is something that over the past few years I have really invested in, and I enjoy having a library with a wide variety to choose from. I was planning on sending these things to my parents’ house for safekeeping during my time in South America, and there would have been nothing wrong with that had God not stepped in and pointed out how much I love those things. He showed me how I was more than willing to give up the things that really didn’t matter to me, but could I sacrifice something that I value when He asked me?
I went down to the altar yesterday and settled the question. What I desire more than anything is for God to have complete control of my life and to have my entire heart. Should there be anything that stands in His way, I must obey Him and destroy the barrier. I want Him to be able to do anything He desires to do in my life. I want Him to have all of me.
It seems so stupid that something this small would stand in the way. It is easy point the finger away from ourselves and toward America and say, “Our society struggles so much with materialism. Americans are so selfish.” However, it has come time for me to give up everything that I have accumulated over the years, and I have found that I am just as guilty of placing high value on things as everyone else. I am the selfish one. Could I be brave enough to tell Christ that I desire more than anything to identify with Him in His life, death, and resurrection? What does that truly mean in the practical of my life? I can and have talked about being wholly His for years, but now when the real test of faithfulness and surrender comes to pass, will I be found true to Him?
Therefore every day as God shines a light on certain areas of my life, I must be obedient to remove whatever stands in His way. I want Him to have a clear path to my heart. This means that I must stay faithful even when it hurts and even when it seems that what He is asking of me is more than I can give. May He give me the courage and strength to follow Him wherever He might lead no matter how much it may cost. Let there be no question: I am HIS.