“What are you willing to give up in order to see a move of the Holy Spirit?” That was the question The Lord asked me as I was recently spending time in prayer and worship.
So often I think we believe that it is something that we do that will invoke and enable a move of God, which is absolutely valid and true. But as The Lord asked me that question, He began to show me that equally as important as what we are willing to do in order to see a move of God is what we are willing not to do. What are we willing to give up in order to see an unprecedented outpouring of the Holy Spirit?
Are we willing to give up our time? Are we willing to give up friendships? Are we willing to give up heart attitudes and pride?
Over the past six months or so, The Lord has brought me to a place where I can honestly say that everything in my life is on the table. Whatever Jesus wants to take He can take.
But over these past months, The Lord has had to wrestle some things out of my life. He has tested me to a greater level than I’ve ever experienced before. In this time I’ve told friends what I felt like The Lord was calling me to do in this season of life and had them make fun of it, and when I wouldn’t compromise on what I knew The Lord had told me to do, some walked away.
Now, don’t get the idea that I was totally unwavering in my conviction. Like I said, this was one of the hardest seasons of testing I’ve ever walked through. Over and over I would try to justify compromising. It wasn’t a bad thing they were asking me to do, I just knew it went against what The Lord had already told me to do. It was even something I wanted to do, but God had said no. And when God says, "No," He means no. There's no middle ground/halfway obedience option.
I have talked in some of my recent posts about this “One Thing” theme The Lord has had me on. A good question to ask ourselves is, "Is God our one desire?" Do we have conditions on our commitment to Christ? Is knowing God himself enough for us or do we want a title and a platform before we are content with following Christ?
I think one thing that so many people who are passionate for God have had wrong (including myself), is that we look at Jesus and say, “Lord, there’s nothing I won’t do for You. I will die for You!” But I think Jesus is responding by pointing to places in our lives and saying, “Yes, you are willing to die for me… but are you willing to let this thing die in you?” Are we willing to let dreams and desires that are not of God die? At the same instant that we are shouting, “God, I want more of You!” He is looking back and saying, “No, I want more of you!”
I believe one of the greatest keys to an increase of God in our lives is not a greater amount of doing (although that has its place), but a greater amount of surrender. Surrender will cause us to act and to do, but we will be doing the right things, not just good things.
What are we willing to give up? Holiness is a huge key in the pursuit of God. We are called to be set apart. In my post What Does It Mean To Be Set Apart, I say, “God’s goal in setting us apart is not about taking us out of the world, but about Him taking the world out of us.” Holiness and surrender are not about legalism, but about intimacy. I am willing to give up anything Jesus calls me to give up because I know that it’s not about a checklist or about being good, but because I know that anything He calls me to lay down will allow me to go deeper with Him. And there is nothing that is worth more than intimacy with Jesus.