Are You Willing To Lose?
(7 min. read)
Hey loves! Happy Sunday! I hope that you have found a church home to visit this Sunday morning, and are eager to fellowship with those present in it. I know that the world keeps telling you that church is in your heart, and you do not have to physically be in church in order to be saved, but please do not listen to the world. Remember, we are to live in the world, but not be of it. Church is necessary for a believer. Why? Well, because church is the place to meet God. The Bible says, “where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them” (Matthew 18:20).
If you do not attend church, more likely than not, you are praying alone. While praying in solitude is a way to have conversation with God, prayer in numbers is a way to encounter Him. I do not know about you, but I need to encounter Him! I need to feel His presence surrounding me. The tabernacle is where He dwells; therefore, go to the tabernacle and allow the presence of God to inundate your soul. Also, I want to suggest that if you have not found a church home, visit a bunch of them until you do. Do not just choose a church based on your family and friends. Each of us are called to our own journey with God. That being said, visit different churches each week, until you feel the connection in your soul. That is when you will know that you have found the right one.
My message for you today is really more about following Christ, and His will for you. I believe that Church is a necessary component in order to decipher what God is telling you to do, but I want to focus this post on accepting the task of following Him. “Then Jesus said to His Disciples, ‘If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. For whoever desires to save his life, will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake, will find it. For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?'”(Matthew 16:24-26)
Finding God requires a lot. I will forewarn you that, if you decide to take up your cross, you will feel like you are losing control of your life. That is because you are! You cannot live as you did before making the decision. You can try, but the spirit will convict you faster than you can blink. Basically, there is no straddling the fence. You are either in or out. When I decided to take up my cross, I honestly thought it would be temporary. I knew that following God was something I wanted to do for life; However, I thought that you carry your cross as needed. I had no idea that your cross is a continuous task.
I had my own plans in mind. I prayed about them, and God did not tell me no, so that was my green light, right? Wrong! When you choose to obey the call of God, your plans are done. “Let him deny himself.” That is an extremely important verse. Choosing to deny yourself is very difficult. Humans have a need to be in control of things. Let’s juts be honest, relinquishing that control to someone you cannot see and feel, can be too risky for some. I cannot tell you how many times I have heard people say “I create my own destiny.” Sadly, when you take that route, you only live up to your ceiling. You might get yourself into a six figure salary career, which is great, but what if following God would have made you a billionaire?
There are no ceilings with God. Stop trying to find your own way, and lose your life for Him. The Bible just told you that this is how you will find your life. Instead of asking for something, be more like Samuel, and say, “Speak Lord, for your servant is listening.” Have God to tell you where to go. BEWARE! You WILL lose friends, lovers, and possessions along the way. Things that were fun prior, are no longer fun with a cross on your shoulder. Things that use to make you laugh, people that use to make you happy, and activities you once found fun, will now disturb you. Do not get discouraged. This is normal. It is a part of losing your life. Let us not forget that formerly, you created the life you saw fit. The relationships, jobs, experiences, etc.. were all your doing. When you choose to lay down your life for the will of God, He will step in, and remove anything and anyone that cannot come with you.
I have to remind myself, daily, that God is in control. I keep wanting to go back to dead end relationships, and open doors that He shut for a reason. It is because He took people and things that I was not prepared to give up. Honestly, I was still trying to hold on to some control. Like “okay God, I will take up my cross, but here are my stipulations.” God said, “there are no stipulations. You either give up your life for Me, or you keep it. The choice is yours.” So, here I am today, completely stripped. I feel wonderful, but I have no idea where I am going. I literally wake up everyday, and say “well God, what is my task for today? Where am I going? Who am I going to encounter?”
I guess the wonderful feeling is due to that fact that I do not have to carry burdens on my cross, which makes it an easier load. Jesus’ cross had all of our sins, our burdens, our ignorance in wanting to crucify him, shame, hatred, and injustices. Our cross only has our flesh. That is a huge difference in loads! That is what He means when He says lose your life. Lose your plans, your thoughts, and your desires, and open your heart to whatever God wants.
Some people are so angry with God because they think He let their life become what it is. As in to say, He could have changed certain things along the way. God will never force Himself onto you. He will only come into your life when invited. Before getting angry with Him or anyone else, and shifting blame on someone for where your life is today, take some time to do a thorough examination of your life. What decision did you make along the way that was contrary to warnings you got from parents or elders? Did you pray before marrying that man or woman? Did you walk through that house before buying it? Did you talk to God about where He wants you to be before you decided to move? The answer is ALWAYS no, unless you distinctly heard a yes. Did you hear a “yes” from God, or did you say yes because you did not hear Him say “no”? Drugs, alcohol, sex, and suicide are all ways people who are hurting use to escape the pain inside. They are outlets to clear the mind, or end the pain indefinitely. Before trying these, are you willing to try to mend your relationship with God?
I cannot stress enough that you need to LAY DOWN YOUR LIFE! God does not care if you come broken, jobless, strung out, dirty, or any of the above. He just says, “come.” You have been willing to trade your soul for the world, and it has left you worse than you were before you started. Are you willing to trade your soul with God? Lose your life in Him? Should you choose to accept this task, it MUST be done without ceasing. Yes, that means pray day in and day out. When you’re walking, you’re praying. Wake up praying, and go to sleep praying. Become protective of your spirit. This means, you cannot go to church, then come home and listen to Future or whatever secular artist you like. Your spirit is a closeout sale. EVERYTHING MUST GO! We are making room for God, and He cannot dwell amongst uncleanliness. The devil will tempt you more during this time. I just told you, so that means you will prepare for it, right? He will send more sexual thoughts, than you have ever had before. Sex is such a huge sin to God because it is a sin against our bodies, which he created. The devil is an opposer, so anything God says to do, He will send the opposite to tempt you. Stay woke!
I am praying with you and for you every step of the way. I have overcome this already, so you have a living, breathing witness of the glory of God! I will magnify His name until I am breathless because I know where He brought me from. Be willing to lose your life. You will not regret it!
Let me pray for you:
Father, only you know whose spirit this word needs to touch. Call them by name, Lord. Give them strength to resist the devil. Give them the courage to lay down their lives for you. Let them know that you are waiting on them. Touch their hearts, and make them rise up, Oh God. Bind their spirits to your will and your way. Loose them from addiction. Loose them from pain. Suicidal thoughts cannot dwell in their minds anymore. I declare and decree all of these things in your name. Amen.
xoxo my loves