There was a time I used to struggle with condemnation because everything I felt the Lord required me to do, I did not want to! It can take a lifetime trying to understand what God can reveal to me in a moment of time.
If I believe I have to make myself willing, I will never fulfil God’s purpose for my life. Strife and bondage will result, not God’s glory.
Romans 11:36 “For of Him, and through Him and to Him are all things, to whom be glory forever.”
Philippians 2:13 “For it is God who works in you both to will and to do of His good pleasure.” God has to work in me to do His will. The result will be for His glory, not mine!
God does not want my willingness of myself!….or otherwise I have ground for self glory. It is Christ in me, the hope of glory. God first called us “to be”, not “to do”. When I learn “to be” I will find an effectiveness in my life I never dreamed of. The devil tries to dupe and accuse us with our unwillingness, but this is the starting point, the foundation for God to work with to bring Him glory from an unwilling vessel. Under the mighty hand of God, I humble myself, embrace my unwillingness and surrender to my Master to make myself available for His will. I choose to abandon my will to His and allow Him to work in me to make me willing to do His will.
God has put the life of Christ in me. Scripture calls it a mystery – Christ in me, the hope of glory! When will I learn to let the life of the mighty Christ live out through me instead of trying to perform and function in my own willingness? Obedience has to be learnt. Hebrews 5:8 declares of Jesus, “Though He were a Son, yet He learned obedience through the things which He suffered,” (KJV). The word “suffered” used here is an old English word meaning “allowed, yielded to, permitted.” Jesus, the Son of God had to learn obedience as the Son of Man, on this earth, so it is for us. It is a process we are in, learning obedience. As a natural man I am not thirsting and panting for the will of God, but my spirit man, made alive by the incorruptible seed of the mighty Christ, claims a different story – Christ in me, the hope of glory! Colossians 1:26-27 “Even the mystery which has been hid from ages from generations, but now is made manifest in His saints, …….which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.”
Luke 2:40-52 records the account of Joseph and Mary’s annual visit, with the family, to Jerusalem at the feast of the passover. Jesus was 12 years old at this time. After the event, they began their return journey with their kinsfolk, but Jesus, unbeknown to His parents, stayed behind in Jerusalem. When they finally realised He was missing, Joseph and Mary returned to look for Him. After 3 days they found Him in the temple, sitting with the doctors of the law, listening to them and asking questions. All that heard Him were astonished at His understanding and answers. Mary scolded Jesus for staying behind but Jesus’ reply was astounding for a 12 year old. “How is it you sought me? Did you not know that I must be about my Father’s business?” Jesus knew who He was, yet He humbled Himself and submitted to His parents for another 18 silent years before His ministry began at the appointed time. During those years He was learning obedience in the family home, honouring His parents, working in the carpenter’s shop until God’s set time.
It is our Heavenly Father’s good pleasure to bring us, His children, to maturity and obedience. He delights in us! He has given us His Holy Spirit to guide us. Without the Guide we will never reach the goal! When I respond to the Holy Spirit and humble myself, lay down my will, it triggers the life of Christ within me to do what He wants me to do. The wonder of it is, I then find it is no longer a chore but a delight to do His will. God has worked it in me and I discover the truth of Philippians 2:13 “For it is God who works in you both to will, and to do, of His good pleasure.” Here I discover that His good pleasure, is my good pleasure! You cannot do the will of God miserably! As the Father works His will in me, I become obedient and find I delight to do His will. The work is all His, thus the credit, the glory is all His. I become one with my Father.
As He sees the life of His beloved Son in us, He declares His good pleasure as He continues the process of “bringing many sons to glory.”