As I write this, it’s the time of year when most New Year’s resolutions have faded into the ether. Best intentions have been sacrificed in the name of comfort and convenience, waiting to be resurrected again next year. Failing to keep some resolutions is trivial; others will be harmful to our health, while some will be detrimental to our walk with Christ. A commitment to Jesus should be more than a non-binding resolution. When we surrender something to God and then take it back, it shows the true attitude of our heart; it is obvious that we do not consider Him Lord of our life.
You can’t surrender some of your life to Jesus any more than one side can “sort of” surrender in a war. It is all or nothing with God. He created all of you for His glory and His mission. If we can’t bring everything we are and lay it at His feet with awe and reverence, then we shouldn’t bring anything at all. What’s the point? What we’re really saying is that we want God to run part of our lives while we maintain control of other areas. It simply won’t work. Jesus stated plainly that we cannot serve two masters (Matthew 6:24). We can’t serve Jesus and ourselves, it has to be one or the other.
This doesn’t mean we will never mess up, fail, sin, or temporarily try and wrest control away from God. It does mean when we do such things that we recognize them, repent of what we have done, throw ourselves at His feet, and worship Him. His grace is beyond measure and His forgiveness is limitless. This is not an excuse to, as Steve Taylor says, “Get the slate cleaned so we can dirty it again”. God sees our hearts and He knows our intentions and our motivations. He forgives our inconsistencies, but will not tolerate our insincerity.
I read that A.W. Tozer would ride the train around Chicago for four hours every morning. He would go into a Pullman’s car so he could be alone. There he would simply get on his knees, pray, and read his Bible. At the end of the day, he would repeat the process, spending another four hours on the train. My heart literally aches to have such devotion to my King. What a picture of total surrender. I read another story where Tozer once missed his keynote speech at a Bible Conference because He was praying in his room. Here was a man who truly understood what was most important in life.
What’s your degree of commitment? Is it simply at the New Year’s resolution level, or do you take your commitment to God seriously? If we are not fully His, we aren’t His at all (Matthew 7:21-23). When tempted to stray from His path or to usurp His dominion, remember the cross. Remember what He endured on your behalf. He loves us beyond measure and wants nothing but the very best for us. He is worthy of all devotion and praise. It’s all or nothing. Which will it be?