"He must become greater; I must become less." John 3:30 (NIV)
Those who have children may have one or two who are strong-willed. They want to do things their way and do it by themselves. Resisting discipline, they are determined to explore that world on their own terms and parents may wonder how to reign them in without breaking their spirit.
Often, these are also the high-achievers. They are willing to step "outside of the box" to investigate life. They try things that others may not think to try and think through problems in unique ways. As a result, they may be able to solve long-standing issues, become inventors, write the great American novel, or paint masterpieces.
However we fall in the family hierarchy, whatever our personalities or talents might be, we have one trait in common and that is that we tend to make life about ourselves. We concentrate on what WE want, what WE like, what makes US happy. Especially today, we live in a ME society. We are seeing that especially right now as the nation is going through the throes of individuals being easily offended and wanting everyday words and actions to be changed to suit them.
As I grow older, the more and more I realize that life isn't about me, or any of us. It is about our Lord and Savior. Our purpose is to bring Him glory. In order to do that, we have to learn to put Him above all. That doesn't mean we neglect other people or our duties and responsibilities in life. It means that we live and relate in such a way that is pleasing to Him.
There is a song, sung by the Christian artist Steve Green, entitled "Whatever It Takes." It is one that always leads me to prayer, but also challenges how I live my life. Here are some of the lyrics:
Whatever it takes to keep me tender toward you
Whatever it takes, Lord, I beg you to do
Whatever you must lead me through
Whatever it takes, Lord, do
When I first heard this song, I wondered if I would ever be able to pray those words. Would I ever be able to turn loose of what is important to me and give it all over to Him? The first few times I attempted to say this as a prayer, I found myself wanting to put stipulations on what I was asking such as, "Please don't touch my family." Then I understood that "whatever" was all-encompassing and that the only way I could mean it was to be willing to surrender all I held dear on earth.
As time goes by and as I spend more and more time with the Lord, I am beginning to see that what I have to ask myself is this: Is He sufficient? If suddenly everything and everyone was gone from my life, would His presence, His love, His sacrifice, His resurrection, be sufficient for me?
These are difficult things to think about but it is my desire. I want to bring Him glory. I want my life to point to Jesus. If He uses me in the life of only one person who chooses to repent and believe in Him then my life will have fulfilled a much greater purpose than it would have if I had spent it any other way.
So, I ask you the question I ask myself. Is He sufficient? Could you lay everything down if He asked you to? Can honoring Him become your greatest desire?
Lots to think about this week. God bless.