As I was reading Paul’s letter to the Romans today, I started wondering what it means to live to God as Jesus did. And how to do it. Because that’s what Christian living is supposed to be, right?
The death he died, he died to sin once for all; but the life he lives, he lives to God. In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus. (Romans 6:10-11, NIV, emphasis added).
Within an hour I laid my eyes on this quote by Watchman Nee and felt God was already answering me: “That strong self-assertive will of mine must go to the Cross, and I must give myself over wholly to the Lord. We cannot expect a tailor to make us a coat if we do not give him any cloth, nor a builder to build us a house if we let him have no building material; and in just the same way we cannot expect the Lord to live out His life in us if we do not give Him our lives in which to live. Without reservations, without controversy, we must give ourselves to Him to do as He pleases with us.”
We can’t expect God to live out his life in us if we do not make room for him. And not just a little bit of room. We need to surrender everything to God.
Now offer your members [your abilities, your talents] as slaves to righteousness, leading to sanctification [that is, being set apart for God’s purpose]. (Romans 6:19b, AMP, emphasis added)
We are to offer our lives, our abilities, our talents, everything we have to God. Then we live to God, then we serve righteousness. Not on our own but in the new way of the Spirit. And this makes all the difference.
But now we are released from the law, having died to that which held us captive, so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit and not in the old way of the written code. (Romans 7:6, ESV, emphasis added)
How to live to God
So how are we going to do it? How can we live for God in real life? We make the decision to live to God every morning anew. Do I live for myself or for God’s glory? Do I want to bear fruit for God or for death?
I choose to live for God, hence every morning I surrender my will, my ego, my time, my skills to God to use them as he sees fit. Then I ask for plenty of grace to sustain me throughout the day. After being turned into the Holy Spirit, I go to meet the challenges of the day filled with hope, faith, and love.
But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves of God, the fruit you get leads to sanctification and its end, eternal life. (Romans 6:22, ESV)
We live to God in his spirit, by his power. It is humbling, really, to realize God does it all, we just need to accept his gifts and surrender to him. Even the benefits are out of this world. They’re literally divine. And there’s plenty of them for all who want to count themselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus.
Forgive our selfishness,
our big egos and stubborn wills.
We want to live a new life with you.
Hence we surrender to you.
We die to live with you.
Pour out grace upon grace.
Fill us with your love and peace.
Give us your Spirit
and use us for your glory.
In Jesus’ name,
Q4U: Do you live to God? How do you do it?
Be blessed, my fellow pilgrim, as you bear fruit for God!