Consecrated, Lord, To Thee
"Keep my life, that it may be
Consecrated, Lord, to Thee."
(Frances Ridley Havergal)
The more aware I become of how deeply needy I am, the more I understand how perfectly sufficient Christ is. He who is sufficient to save to the uttermost and continues now to intercede for me (Heb. 7:25) is sufficient also to keep me in his grace. How much more humbling is it that His keeping never wavers, for it depends not on my ability to be faithful—since that would quickly fail—but on His own faithfulness. His merit. His complete and perfect sacrifice. His continual intercession.
Havergal writes in her book, Kept for the Master's Use, "If Christ’s keeping depends upon our trusting, and our continuing to trust depends upon ourselves, we are in no better or safer position than before, and shall only be landed in a fresh series of disappointments." Christ carries and enables even our trusting! Maybe you're thinking as I did, "I can't even do that??" No, I can't.
It's rightfully humbling to understand how far my neediness goes because only then can I release my tight grasp on my own understanding and ask God to help me trust in Him with an undivided heart (Prov. 3:5).
In walking through the Psalms, God has been drawing my attention to how often the psalmist pleads for deliverance on the basis of God's steadfast love, mercy, and faithfulness and for the sake of His glory. Not because of some great feats of faith or intense self-discipline, but for the sake of more brilliantly magnifying His own glory. Essentially, the psalmist is saying, "Not because you owe me, but because of who you say you are!"
Pleas for help and rescue were made on the unshakable confidence of knowing who God is and believing His Word is true.
His view of God was so grand, so glorious, so magnificent, that surrendering his life to God's purpose and plan was well worth it.
This is why we can make the same prayer Havergal penned and desire it more than anything: "keep my life, that it may be consecrated, Lord, to Thee."
A life wholly set apart for His service and offered up for His glory cannot be wasted, subpar, "less than," or anything else the world or selfish sinful nature tells us it would be.
Why should we want to be kept in and for Himself? It is because we know He who does the keeping, and it is only in living for Him that we can bear the fruit of true satisfaction, real joy, and complete fulfillment.
Because she puts better than I ever could, I believe Havergal's words on this subject are well worth ending with: "Not for ‘me’ at all but ‘for Jesus’; not for my safety, but for His glory; not for my comfort, but for His joy; not that I may find rest, but that He may see the travail of His soul, and be satisfied! Yes, for Him I want to be kept. Kept for His sake; kept for His use; kept to be His witness; kept for His joy! Kept for Him, that in me He may show forth some tiny sparkle of His light and beauty; kept to do His will and His work in His own way; kept, it may be, to suffer for His sake; kept for Him, that He may do just what seemeth Him good with me; kept, so that no other lord shall have any more dominion over me, but that Jesus shall have all there is to have;—little enough, indeed, but not divided or diminished by any other claim. Is not this, O you who love the Lord—is not this worth living for, worth asking for, worth trusting for?"
written by a SPIRITUAL WOMAN contributor.
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