Written by Rachel Denison
In Colorado, Craig and I both felt God was leading us to make some serious changes in our lives. As of right now, we are sensing God wants us to take on more ministry opportunities. But we knew this would come at a cost. We knew it meant God was asking us to make some room in our lives for these new opportunities. Do you ever sense God is telling you the same?
It has almost been like a spring-cleaning of our lives. How refreshing it has been!
We essentially put our lives on the table and said, “God, have your way.” This can always be an exciting/terrifying moment. As we sat back and truly assessed we noticed something. Our lives didn’t fully represent the “all in” mentality our hearts were expressing—a sobering moment, for sure. Isn’t it amazing how we can have the best intentions and a full heart to serve and love God, but overtime allow things of the world to slip in? It reminds me of the parable of the sower when Jesus says, “As for what was sown among thorns, this is the one who hears the word, but the cares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and it proves unfruitful” (Matthew 13:22).
The word we felt God speaking is from Joshua 3:5: “Then Joshua said to the people, ‘Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do wonders among you.’” So this is essentially what we were doing when we said, “God, we’re putting our lives on the table; have your way.”
Can I just say, allowing God to have his way in our lives and to know and search our hearts afresh has been the best thing we could’ve done. Everyone who chooses to accept Jesus for himself or herself must make this decision initially to give their lives to God and submit to his Lordship (Matthew 10:38-39). But it’s also a choice that begs to be made daily-- "Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me” (Luke 9:23).
It had been too long since we’d done that and made that declaration to God. We had been allowing God to speak into all our big decision-making, but somewhere along the way we has lost that daily denial of self. That is when the cares of this world crept in. And it was time for God to clean house.
Since implementing all God said to get rid of for the sake of more of his Kingdom, we have experienced many things—spiritual warfare, peace, a flood of his presence, the resistance of our flesh—but it has been so worth it. We can honestly say our experience has been inline with Jesus’ words when he said, “As for what was sown on good soil, this is the one who hears the word and understands it. He indeed bears fruit and yields, in one case a hundredfold, in another sixty, and in another thirty” (Matthew 13:23).
Being quickly obedient to God’s word and instruction has yielded and born so much fruit in our hearts and lives, and we are thankful for a God who is faithful to his word and promises. I would simply encourage you to quickly respond to the things you feel God impressing upon your heart. If you haven't asked him in a while for direction or made that kind of declaration of surrender, spend some time mediating and praying to see if it's time. Allow him to come in and search and know your heart afresh.
“Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there be any grievous way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting!” –Psalm 139:23-24
He will surely do it. He is good.