Wednesday, June 16 |

Will You Lay Down Your Life?

I've started doing my personal devos from My Utmost For His Highest. I must confess,
I've had the book for years, but never read more than about three pages from it.

That's the thing with me - FULL of good intention, but running on 'E' in application!
So today's devo came from John 15:13,15 "Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friend.... I have called you friends"

For the first time, I realized what this verse meant. I've heard preachers say (and even have read Paul making the statement) that every day we lay down our life for Christ. But I always thought this verse specifically was teaching that we should be willing, if necessary, to die physically for the cause of Christ. I know there are many Christians around the world who do in fact do that. They put their lives, physically, on the line every day for what they believe.

But it struck me today that in this verse, He's telling us to die to Him not physically, but in our emotions. Our hearts. Our minds. Our desires. The ultimate sacrifice, I think, is not the death of our bodies, but the death of our desires, on a daily basis. Mr. Chambers writes "We are not made for the bright-shining moments of life, but we have to walk in the light of them in our everyday ways". My every day, living, of life is to be sacrificed every moment for Him. This was very convicting for me.

Paul also talks about bringing his thoughts into subjection. This too, is a struggle with me. There are things I desire that I have to deny myself. There are fears I have that I have to learn not to meditate on. The war always begins in the mind. And it is the toughest battle to fight. Paul asked the Lord on three occasions to remove a physical infirmity. The Lord denied him, saying 'my grace is sufficient for thee'. Sometimes, our infirmity isn't physical, but mental.

Sometimes I wish I had more time to myself. I spend so much time working - dishes, laundry, bathrooms, errands, cooking. But it occurred to me to day that there are different kinds of time. There's the time I spend working, but then there's the time I spend loving. It's easier to sacrifice working time. I have a list of things to do, and mechanically, I do them. Check them off the list. Done. What's next? These things are the things that are necessary. They must be done, so I do them. I do them so I can have some time to do something I enjoy doing. Like writing posts :)

But I am sadly lacking in the department of sacrificing loving time. What greater reward is there than to give that time to another? Personal, intentional, one-on-one, quality time. An extra minute on a hug, on a project, on teaching, on laughing.

"Mommy will you...?" shouldn't be met with impatience because I'm doing something else. It should be met with sacrifice.


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