The apostle, Paul, challenged the Corinthian church with words that apply to us today. 1 Corinthians 6:19 “What? Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost who is in you, who ye have of God, and ye are not your own”.
I cannot do what I like with my life and expect to receive all the fullness of God. I am God’s property. My life, time, possessions and finance belong to the Lord. Do I recognise that He is the Source of all I am and have……in Christ. None of us can declare we are 100% sold out for God, but the Holy Spirit can bring us that place incrementally, if we submit to His guidance and leadership in our daily lives.
Because we have so much ground of self-rule to surrender in our lives, we tend to come to the Lord in “installments”, as the Holy Spirit directs, “under His mighty hand”……. “…precept upon precept, line upon line, here a little and there a little”.
Jim Elliot said, “A man is no fool to give up that which he cannot keep, to gain that which he cannot lose”. We have eternal security in Jesus Christ and the finished work of the Cross alone. We try to keep things, hang on to them, instead of giving our blessings back to the Lord. God has a greater purpose for our lives than we can ever hope for, or see, both for ourselves and others.
Consider these two measures: How much of Christ is in me? How much of me is in Christ? Positionally: I am the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus, (2 Corinthians 5:21). Possessionally: Is that righteousness demonstrated in the way I live my life?
We have often quoted “I cannot hear what you say for the noise of what you are!” Selah. My life speaks.
God does much with little, most with least and everything with nothing!
Consider the mighty miracle Jesus performed with just five loaves and 2 fishes. In a time of drought, the prophet Elijah heard the sound of an abundance of rain, and sent his servant out to check the sky for the imminent rain. The servant went out 6 times and reported nothing, but on the 7th time he reported a cloud, the size of a man’s hand. That little cloud was the forerunner of the abundance of rain that followed. A little servant girl, his wife’s maid, was used of God to give leprous Naaman information regarding the prophet, Elisha, who was instrumental in his healing, (2 Kings 5).
Dwight Moody once said, “The world has yet to see what God will do with a man that is fully consecrated to him”.
There is no limit in God. It is we who limit the Unlimited One by our choices. We are a company of insignificant nobodies, whose significance is the potential of the mighty Christ within us, waiting to break forth to extend His kingdom, for His glory.
How often have we sang “I surrender all….” God hears and comes to test my words. He points to something in my life and says, “I want that!” When I withhold, I insult God. Paul spoke of the “daily dying to self”, (1 Corinthians 15:31). The joy and peace that follow surrender to God far outweighs the pain of hanging on to things. We can never out-give God. As we surrender another measure of ourselves, God gives us another measure of His Son, Jesus Christ, the Pearl of great price.
Let us remind ourselves of David Livingstone and his little white goat:
David Livingstone, during his missions to Africa, had experienced digestive problems. He used the milk from a little white goat he kept to remedy his complaint. Thus the goat was very important to him. Livingstone became friendly with a local warrior chief. The chief gave Livingstone his spear, informing him that it would give him respect as others would recognise his acceptance by the chief. The chief went on to inform Livingstone that, in his culture, they had made a covenant, which required him to then give the chief something in exchange. The missionary asked what he required. To his great dismay, the chief pointed to his little white goat and said, “I want that!”…..his prized possession.
Let us reverently ask the Lord what our little white goat is that He requires. The fullness of God requires all of me.