Jul 15, 2013

Duty or Devotion?

 "And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might."
~ Deuteronomy 6:5

Have you ever heard someone say something like this? "The least that you can do for Christ is serve Him, because He gave His life for you." This statement is not wrong, but I think it's taken out of context a lot of times. This topic is something that the Lord has been dealing with me about lately, and He lead me to share it with you. I have by no means learned this all the way, but the Lord continues to teach me about it each day as I seek to grow in Him.

First, I want to share some of my personal struggles learning to serve the Lord out of devotion of Him, rather than just duty. I have the sort of personality that just wants to go, go, go, and never rest until the work is done. Living next door to our church, sometimes the knowledge of things that need to be done can weigh very heavily on me. The building needs cleaned, there are hymnbooks to fix, little pieces of paper that need to be picked up, crumbs on the floor of the nursery, you know- the "mess after church" kinda stuff. At one time, I began to throw myself into this work, believing that it was my duty to accomplish all this, since I'm around all the time. The doing of the work is not bad- my problem was that I was relying on my own strength, and that I thought I could do it all on my own. And that I tried to do it all. While God does have some things that He requires of us (Micah 6:8), He does not require, or desire, that we run ourselves completely ragged with work. Well, that's what I was doing, driven by my desire to " fulfill my duty." And I was exhausted months later, when my loving, wise, and Godly parents pulled me aside and explained to me what was happening. They told me that God doesn't expect one person to do everything- we simply can't. It's not my duty alone, and duty is not the reason we should be serving God, anyhow.  I came to the realization that I have no strength on my own to even do the regular things I should do- it's got to be Christ living and working through me, teaching me to love Him with all my heart, soul, and might. He does the work - not the work that I want to do, or think I need to do, but the work that HE wants me to do. My job is to yield and let Him do it.

As I continue to grow in Christ, He has taught me that it can't be me living this life at all. It has to be Jesus Christ himself living His life through me! (Galatians 2:20) Like I said, I have no strength! But praise the Lord, He does have strength! I have no power in and of myself to live a victorious Christian life, yet Jesus Christ, who lives inside me, does! The power and strength to serve Him devotedly, and passionately, has to come from Him. If it doesn't, I am simply doing things in my own weak flesh, and that can never please Him. Only when I yield to the Holy Spirit's leading in ALL things, can he use me for His purposes, and I can depend on His strength, because He will never wear out. The very least I can do for Christ is to live for Him, but the key is to realize that I can't. It has to be Him - and only Him!







2 comments:

  1. Great thoughts and such a blessing! Thanks, Hannah!

    ReplyDelete
  2. wow! these are some really good thoughts!!!

    ReplyDelete

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