For those of us who trust God for our salvation I think each of us desires to totally surrender to God's will. We want to live as Jesus did. We want a strong relationship with God. We want to serve Him. We want to praise Him. We want to please Him. Until He asks us to experience cancer or loss of a loved one. Until He asks us to step out of our shell and talk to someone about Jesus. Until that big bill comes in for an unexpected repair. But total surrender is a sacrifice. It's living for Him in spite of the circumstances. It is totally fine to desire to be healthy and financially sound, but when God has a different plan, we need to say, "Thank you, please help me bring you glory in this." THAT IS SO HARD TO DO. But that is what Jesus did. He died on that cross so our sins could be forgiven. He obeyed the Father when it cost Him dearly. Our life on earth is not for our benefit, it is for His.
I struggle with this. Not the concept but the doing. I don't want to think about my mortality...I want to live a happy, long life serving God and taking care of my wife. I don't want to worry about cancer and how it is changing my life. But I want to totally surrender to God. So I need to thank Him and ask Him to help me take one step at a time. I need to ask Him for a good and grateful attitude so I can bring Him glory. I need to thank Him for walking with me.
I have always admired Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. I have always wanted to be just like them, willing to give my life for Him. But I'm not sure I'd be so willing, no, I guess I need to say I wouldn't be so willing. I'd look for a way out. I love how they answered the king..."If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to save us from it, and He will rescue us from your hand, O king. But even if He does not, we want you to know, O king, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up." Daniel 3:16-18 They knew God had the ability to save them but they also knew God's plan was for them to be committed to Him even if He didn't save them. That's what I face with this cancer. I know God can save me from it, but maybe I can serve Him better with it. I want to walk His path, not mine.
So how can you help your children understand this total surrender stuff? Talk to them about Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednago. Talk to them about Moses and Joshua. Talk to them about Peter and Paul. The Bible is full of men and women who were totally committed to God. And they were all like us...sinners...imperfect. But they were also forgiven and given the power from God (not their own power) to serve Him as He needed.
God bless you as you help your children become more like Jesus this week!
We take turns writing when God gives us an idea. The author will be noted.