When we believe on the Lord Jesus Christ as our Savior we begin a divine walk with the Almighty. Each day we are wooed to go higher and higher with Him, forgetting those things which are behind and pressing on to what is ahead. This is a journey of letting go of ourselves and perhaps what we thought life should be like. It is a laying hold to God’s plan and direction for our lives and letting go of our own methods and definitions of success and fulfillment. There is a clear understanding which resonates in the hearts of those who have heard His whispering to go deeper in Him. No matter what circumstance we currently find ourselves in we know the truth in our hearts that this is the way we should take and no other way will do. This is not a how-to list or a formula for success but a revelation of the purposeful journey of our lives that is the call from the One who whispers in our spirits, “There is more.”
The Call to Embark
Have you ever felt like you were always on the verge of embarking on an epic journey that you were created to take but distractions, false starts, and fears impeded your progress? I speak of those deep areas that do not depict our Beloved’s beauty within us. For a time the Lord had been dealing with me about some areas of my life to let go of and do things His way. These areas had long needed to be dealt with, for I never entirely yielded them to the Master. I preferred to pile them on as burdens and carry the heavy load with me year after year. I will not name the specifics so that more will be able to relate with their own areas the Lord has knowingly laid His finger on. We realize the need to release these needless things the more intimate we are with Him. They come to mind day after day, year after year. We ponder in our hearts, “Yep, I should do that,” or “I should give this up.” He desires to refine the dross out of us so that we become the most useful of vessels and be transformed into His image.
In this place of intimacy with the Almighty we clearly see those areas of our lives we have not yet let go of and that are required to die so that we might move on from strength to strength and experience less of us and more of Him. As He whispers to each of us of areas of self we need to die to we can be assured that in all ways and at all times, His direction will align with His word as laid out in the Holy Bible.
“Very truly I tell you, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds.” John 12:24
At times we may understand His word and hear His voice calling us to deeper dwellings with Him, yet for various reasons we choose to delay the letting go. We can continue to try to rationalize why we don’t have to give up a certain thing, why others get to do it, why it is not really sin, or even try to substitute self-effort or excelling in another area without having to be obedient in this one area. In my own situation, I delayed at last submitting a specific area of my life to God and would try to fill the void of unrealized purpose with distractions, rationalize that it didn’t matter, tried to do it in my own strength, and even feared what it would be like if I did let it go. Here, the revelation of my lack of trust in God became apparent. Either we trust Him with our whole lives or we don’t. Is He Beloved, Counselor, Father, or is he a distant God we follow and worship when it is convenient? As He beckons us to embark on a purposeful walk and as we delay, it is like coming to a crossroads. We can continue to dwell in the land of indecision, noncommittal, and disobedience or we can take up our cross and follow on with Him no matter the look or feel of the path.
“Then Jesus said to his disciples, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.” Matthew 16:24
Some things may be easy to give up and some things more challenging for it tastes delicious to our flesh. However, the call to let go of those things that hinder us and follow on with Him comes to us over and over in the night seasons and in our waking. We cannot escape it, for it is always with us. We come face to face with the stark reality that this is what we are made for. We might look around at others and see they are not required to give way to such areas of their lives. This is because the Lord may be working on other areas in them and may have differing calls. What may be utterly important for us to give up, for another, it may be just part of life with no call from the Master that it is an issue to that vessel. We can only compare ourselves to what God is doing in ourselves, not in others. He knows the way that we take and what we have need to let go to Him.
When once we start walking, free of the hindrances that we at last let go, we then become more aware of the brightness ahead. In our spirits we can see the unmistakable color of purpose, our purpose in Him. At this juncture, we may not even fully see the whole purpose, but we know it is bright for it reflects our Father’s pleasure. This way at first feels harder, but it is so much more fulfilling. No matter the refining fires ablaze around us we begin to sense purpose in our steps. We feel His pleasure and desire to let go of more that He lays His finger upon. Next time our release will be quick, for we count all things loss save Jesus Christ, the one who calls us higher to experience “the more” in this life and throughout eternity.
“As for God, his way is perfect: the Lord’s word is flawless; he shields all who take refuge in him. For who is God besides the Lord? And who is the Rock except our God? It is God who arms me with strength and keeps my way secure. He makes my feet like the feet of a deer; he causes me to stand on the heights. He trains my hands for battle; my arms can bend a bow of bronze. You make your saving help my shield, and your right hand sustains me; your help has made me great. You provide a broad path for my feet, so that my ankles do not give way.” Psalm 18:30-36
I let go of areas the Lord had brought to light in me, I set my face like flint to be unmoved in what He wanted to work in me and refine out of me. The irrational fears fell off first. Some days I felt empty and just stood without the area I had so long filled myself with and He was faithful to fill me to overflowing. I became very aware of His presence, where before I would not have perceived Him. I saw my life as a walk with Him in which each day He transformed me into His image more and more as I decreased and I let Him increase in Me.
With the letting go, we begin to walk with steadied gate drawing from His strength to sustain. We breathe the fresh air of freedom from ourselves and all that warred to bind us and hinder our progress. When we think back we find that the old life that gave a false sense of contentment and comfort no longer fit nor even holds any draws to return. Why return to the muck pit when we are traversing the heights, doing that which we know in every fiber of our being that we were created to do in Him?
Oh, how blessed to walk in this pilgrim way. He woos us so that we might know Him, so that we might journey with Him on the heights – above what man says is possible, above what we think we can even accomplish in our lifetime, above all the limitations of a fallen world, to a walk of purpose and purity. Here we come to understand what it means that we are seated with Christ in the heavenlies. Our position in Him and journey with Him transcends time into eternity.
May these songs gladden your heart as you continue the epic journey with your Beloved: