Sunday, November 22, 2009

Humility Week 4: Sacrifice

The more I walk in humility with God, the more I'm realizing I have to give up... scratch that... the more I'm realizing there is that needs giving up. It's funny how God opens our eyes to things we've probably seen or heard before, but only now experience them as though for the first time.

When I got married, I learned very quickly that my new married life had become a relationship of compromises. I had to give up certain things, such as 24/7 sports, laziness in housecleaning, or being loud while getting ready in the morning. Because of my new status, my life stopped being entirely about me and became about my wife as well.

After a few years, I finally realized that marriage wasn't about simply giving up certain things but more about changing altogether. Being a single guy, I was selfish and self-centered. Being married, these did not fit. My options were to either change myself or change my relationship, and I was
not about to quit a relationship simply because of my own selfishness.

Once I committed myself - truly, fully, heart-soul-strength-and-mind - committed myself to my wife, I found a different life. We were no longer arguing because I hadn't done the dishes or touched the laundry that had been there for three days. Things weren't perfect, but I found myself doing things for my wife I hadn't done before. The biggest change is that I found myself wanting to do these things, despite their cost, simply because they make her happy.

And so it goes with God. As C.S. Lewis put it in Mere Christianity (thanks for reminding me about this, Matt!), God is taking my house and rebuilding it; He is making something altogether different than I thought of. I've had to sacrifice my expectations, desires, wants (though sometimes I believe they're needs), and habits. In the end, though, I am reminded that God is not simply improving on my house; He is rebuilding a palace because it is where He intends to live.


Sacrifice - Elton John

Here's a song to go with the topic of sacrifice. It's an interesting one to think about, with what Elton John is talking about giving up for the sake of his current committed relationship, though the analogy isn't perfect.

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