“Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.” (Matt. 22:37)
We cannot do what we are commanded to do, we cannot keep every thought captive for Christ, we cannot continuously keep our body under subjection, we cannot at all times be just and live by faith. “But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8)
We who have been born-again are no longer classified as sinners, we are saints, saved by the grace of God through faith in Jesus Christ who still sin, it is impossible not to, for we still live in the flesh, and Romans 7:18 stands as truth, “For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not.”
We are constantly tugged in three directions, the flesh hounds us, the world calls to us, and the Lord God pulls us, draws us closer to Himself. It is an impossible life that we live, but Philippians 4:13 also stands as truth, “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.”
Here is where many who claim Jesus Christ as Lord falter, here is where works begin to take the place of willful submission to the Holy Spirit, we want that which we cannot perform, and so we must rely on the Lord to do those works within us and through us. The key words here are “willful submission,” we must want to be transformed, we must desire to be changed into the image of His Son, we must deny ourselves and not just follow the Lord but pray for the desire to be led.
Patience is necessary, in fact, it is a requirement, far too many people begin what they believe to be a work for the Lord and then ask Him to bless that work, instead of hearing James 4:15, “For that ye ought to say, If the Lord will, we shall live, and do this, or that.” The first step in any desire to be pleasing and profitable, if any man can be so, in the eyes of the Almighty is prayer. “What would you have me to do,” must come first.
This is no different than any other project we set forth in our lives, “For which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first, and counteth the cost, whether he have sufficient to finish it?” (Luke 14:28) The cost must be calculated. This of course should have happened before you gave your life to Christ, for in doing so you said, “I am now yours, do with me as you best see fit for your glory.” And so, in anything we do, it should be for His glory, which requires patience, which requires prayer, and a heart that has been trained to hear Him when He speaks.
There is nothing in the Scriptures that says, “Sit down and write ten or more letters every week,” or “Make videos that glorify My name,” but that is what I heard and so that is what I do. I did not seek to do these things, I had never even given any thought to them until just a few short years ago. This is how the Lord works, be available to Me, I will call you when it is time, until then, study to show yourself approved, learn of Me, listen when I speak. “Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.” (Jer. 33:3)
This is how He is calling me at this time of my life, it was not my choice, as all our service to the Lord should be, but His will, and then His will becomes our desire.
The world and the flesh are our enemies, they go against everything that is of the Most High, it is a continuous battle. We want what we cannot obtain here, if we try to serve in our own power, if we believe that we can devise and perform works and deeds that are going to be pleasing in His eyes, we deceive ourselves. We by nature want to remain by the still waters, the Lord calls us to walk in the wilderness with Him. Many times what He calls us to do goes against our nature, “Thy will be done” is to be our answer.