Originally posted at simplyfinite.wordpress.com.
As a self-diagnosed over-committed young adult, I know what it’s like to be busy. I have learned to juggle the many activities, ministries, commitments and classes that come with the territory of college life. This can be a challenge, to be sure. But more than this– indeed, so much more– is the struggle to consecrate these things we do. To offer them to the Father. To do them for Someone above yourself. To ask Him to take it out of your hands, make it His, have His way.
Even as a senior, I still haven’t perfected this art, but I do try to offer these things I do, especially ministry-related activities and leadership roles, to God. I find the cry of my heart, amidst the planning and the preparation and the multi-tasking and the micro-managing, is “Lord, make this Yours.” I don’t want this to be “my” activity, “my” ministry, “my” accomplishment. I want it to be Yours. In Your hands. For Your glory, Lord. And, because of the great mercy and goodness of the Father, He accepts these things I give Him. He takes them from my hands. He has His way within them. There is no way to fully explain the depth of His faithfulness in that regard. He says, “Yes. This is Mine. It always has been. Thank you for giving it to Me. Thank you for doing it for Me.” And such contentment fills my heart at the reception of those words, at that confirmation.
In my current leadership position, with all of my responsibilities and pressures and expectations to be met, my heart called out that earnest refrain: “Lord, I offer this to You! Make it Yours.” And I’ve been working hard: trying to make it successful, trying to let go of my control and allow the Holy Spirit to step in, trying to let it be His. And in His goodness, in a moment of prayer, He said, “Yes. I claim this. This is Mine.” A flood of relief. Overwhelming peace. Rest. But in the silence of my heart, I felt Him say…
“I don’t just want what you place in front of Me. I don’t just want your good works, your ministries, your job. I don’t need all that you think you need to offer to Me. I’m not concerned with how good your résumé looks or how busy you can make your schedule with ‘good works.’
I want you.
I want you. In totality. Not just the good works or the polished ministry or the successful lesson plan you can offer to Me. I. want. you. I want your heart to beat with Mine. I want your soul to be filled to overflowing with the knowledge of My love for you. I want you. I claim you. You are Mine. Not just this thing you are offering. Stop hiding behind the offering, and let yourself be seen by Me. Known by Me. Loved by Me. I want you. Angela. I want you.”
I don’t know about you, but I haven’t been caught off guard by the intimacy of Christ’s love recently. This hit me so hard, so deeply. It struck the area of my heart that holds on to the false idea that you’re only as good as what you can do and the image you can portray. He called me out from the ministry I was hiding behind and pierced me with that gaze of love. How focused I was on what I could offer Him; how I thought I could “please” Him! How incredibly flawed that was. The things we can give to God, the activities we can offer to Him, mean nothing if we aren’t giving Him our hearts. He wants hearts. And in return for giving Him our heart, you know what He gives? His heart.
God, all I cared about was what things I could offer to You.
But You want more.
You want me.