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What is your price?

Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls, who, on finding one pearl of great value, went and sold all that he had and bought it.”  Mat 13:45-46

One day, about a month ago, I was listening to a YouTube video called “The Keith Green Story – Full.”  It told the story of the conversion of one of Contemporary Christian Music’s most beloved ministers.  I will not call him an artist, for I am sure he did not consider himself anything but a minister of the gospel of Jesus Christ.  As I was listening, one thing kept coming to my mind.  He gave all he had and all he was for the work God called him to do.  He never held anything back.  This intrigued me because I have a tendency for no moderation in what I have passion for.  Therefore,  when God made it clear to me that I had not given all to Him, I was surprised, confused and humbled.

So, what does it mean to give everything to God?  This question is complex for it encompasses more than most people think.   Many have on their list things such as money, time, talents, etc.  However, lets go beyond and see other things that we may not have thought about.  I will start with one God showed me, my finances.  I get very tense and frustrated when things get tight regarding my finances.  Irritable would probably be a good word.  When I get frustrated, He is not my focus, thus I am not much use to Him.  After listening to the Keith Green story, God told me that I had to give my finances to Him.  I could not hold this back.  It has taken much prayer, but I am more at peace regarding this issue than I have been in a long time.  Another area God brought to my attention were my dreams and desires.  There are many things I want to do with my life after I retire.  I want to go into some form of full time ministry, be that as a pastor or missionary, lecturer or teacher.  I have had this dream for some time.  However, I sometimes feel as though it may not become a reality.  It is times like these that I get really frustrated.  However, God told me I had to give my dreams and desires to Him as well.  He may have different plans for me then I do, and I must yield to His will.  We must give all our possessions, time, talents, dreams, hopes, hurts, and anything else we can think of.  If we are Christians, then they are not ours anymore, but His. We are not our own, we have been bought with a price.

If we are not willing to give all, then we are placing that which we are not willing to give up, before God in our lives.  This is the definition of idolatry. If there is something that you are not willing to give up to God, then that thing is obviously more important to you than He is.  To the Rich Young Ruler in Mark 10, it was his stuff, his money.  To the Pharisees, it was their positions of authority and delusions of being better than anyone else.  To Herod, it was the finer things in life, and the approval of the powers of Rome.  To the learned men on Mars Hill whom Paul introduced to the unknown god, it was their philosophies and extensive love of knowledge.  Search your heart.  Is there something that pulls at you, trying to convince you that you have given more than most, more than enough, and there is no need to give it up?

Let us take this a step further.  If there is something that you are not willing to give up, then it opens the door for the enemy to use this to entice you away from God.  Imagine if comfort is something you cannot give up.  Then if you are threatened with the loss of everything you have, you may choose the path of the Rich Young ruler.  If your family is more important, then threatening them could be your downfall.  What is the price, if offered, that would turn you away from God?  Do not simply shrug this off with “I would never turn away.”  Many have thought the same before their fall.  If someone said to you, if you do not renounce Christ you or your family would be tortured and killed, would you walk away from God?  What if they threatened to starve you, depriving you of food and water?  What if they threatened to kill your children in front of your eyes?  This was done by the soldiers of Antiochus Epiphanes in Judah around 160 BC.  If they were not willing to adopt the gods of Greece, thus denying Jehovah the true God, they would kill their children one by one, until they were all dead or they renounced God.  It is important that we give everything to God and make Him number one in our lives, loving Him more than anyone or anything; more than life itself.

Turning this around, what can someone offer you to denounce God?  If we have not given all, we could easily be tempted to accept something extremely important and desirable to us.  It could be gold or silver, or the return of a loved one.  The enemy will use this to lure you into his snare and try to get you to walk away from the Lord.  This is especially true during times of weakness.  If you cling to the things of this world, you can be tempted to be of the world, thinking you are still following God.  It is easy to delude ourselves into thinking God is pleased with us, or that we would give up our idols if we had to, knowing that day will never come.  However, what if it does?  We must develop a relationship with God that will allow us to see Him for who He is, a wonderful and powerful being whose love for us transcends everything, one who will never leave us or forsake us.  It is only when we understand, as much as is humanly possible, and through the power of the Holy Spirit that resides within us, the true God as He really is, will we desire and be capable of giving all to Him in service.

Have you taken the time to examine yourself, as to whether you have died to self and are living entirely for Him?  Pray that God will open your eyes to the things you are holding back, not willingly giving to God as a sacrifice of praise to Him.  Do this in humility and a true willingness to accept the truth no matter how difficult it is to hear.  God will be gentle with you, but He will also reveal those things that need adjusting in your life.  He is sanctifying us, conforming us into the image of Christ.  As we yield to Him completely in this process, we shall find it easier to give it all, knowing that Christ gave His all for us.  And when we do, we will find that in actuality, we gained more than we gave up, in the form of peace, contentment, and joy in the Holy Ghost.

Categories: Culture
  1. July 25th, 2013 at 15:16 | #1

    Very clearly stated. Your message brings both fear and hope! I think the way around the fear is to remember what I read somewhere, that obedience in all the little things prepares us for the big hard choices.
    God bless you.

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