In my Bible study this week I came across a quote that I had written down a few years ago from a sermon. I don’t remember much about the sermon (sorry, Bro. John!) except this quote, but I remember writing it down. It obviously made some kind of impression on me at the time or I wouldn’t have written it down at all. I believe, honestly, that the Holy Spirit prompted me to write down this quote to come across today and maybe even many more times in the future. Because today it made an impression.
Here is the quote: “You will have as much of God as you intensely desire to have of Him.”
It is one of those quotes that when the preacher puts just the right amount of emphasis on it and then pauses, that you dutifully write down in your notes. You probably even think about it briefly and nod your head in agreement. But that is where the impact ends. Why? Because most of us don’t intensely desire to have more of God than we have now.
We have learned that when we invite more of God in things can get uncomfortable. He may start to call us into service opportunities. He may start pointing out our sins to us and asking for repentance. He may even want us to start reading our Bibles and praying regularly. And all of that is just the beginning. When we tentatively start praying for God to work in our lives, we usually have our own agenda that we expect Him to follow. But God doesn’t work that way.
In the last few months of my life, God has been working in just about every area of my life to draw me closer to Him. For years I have been praying that God would keep me in His will for my life, even when I cannot see it or feel it, that He would keep my feet on a path that leads to His will. That prayer has started to pay off in ways I never even imagined it would. And I have started to intensely desire more of God in my life. I want more of Him in my daily life. I want more of Him in my marriage, my home, my parenting, my friendships. I want more of Him in my professional life and my acquaintances. I even want more of Him in my trips to the grocery store.
What prompted all this, you may ask? Well, some things started happening that made me realize that I cannot control my life. There is absolutely nothing about my life that I have control over. I cannot control even whether I wake up in the morning or not. I am totally dependent on Him for everything that I have and do and say. While for some people this may be a depressing or difficult thought to comprehend, for me it was incredibly freeing. It means that I don’t have to have control over anything. All I have to do is give it to Him.
So, I have. I have given Him everything in my life. Don’t get me wrong, it is a daily struggle to put away my sinful nature and take up the righteousness that He calls me to. I fail repeatedly every day. But I get back up and look at my Heavenly Father for guidance. I ask for His forgiveness when I fall and reach for His hand to help me back up.
There is absolutely no way to describe what an amazing experience it is to seek God with everything in you. He is breaking down walls in my life, bringing healing and restoration, cleansing me of things I never knew I needed cleansing of. It is a difficult, gut-wrenching, heart-changing process. I feel like physically and spiritually I am being put through a ringer. I end every day exhausted from the process, but I also end every day so full of joy and contentment that there is no room for worrying about the exhaustion.
It is my sincerest hope that every person who reads these words will be called into a deeper, more intense relationship with God. If you don’t know how to get there or where to start, simply start by praying that God will give you a more intense desire for Him. No restrictions, no conditions, holding nothing back. That is a prayer that I promise you God will answer.