By Andy Combs …
About 8 years ago the Lord did a huge work in my life. Looking back now I can see that it centered around the question of “Who gets to be the king of my life?”
I was sitting in my comfy chair, thinking about the trajectory of my life and my family, and I was depressed. Not because it wasn’t good! It was actually very good, even exceptional by high standards! But it wasn’t good enough for me. And I believe that what happened next was when I went from a believer to a follower.
It was a quiet prayer in my heart, “Lord, you get to be king. My way of doing things isn’t good enough. It has to be your way. I believe that you are good. I believe you will lead me. If you’ll show me what to do, I’ll do it your way, whatever that takes and whatever that looks like.”
Looking back now I believe that was the day I first took up my cross and followed him. Luke 9:23 says, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up your cross daily and follow me.”
I had “believed” God could lead me but I had never bet my life on it before! I love the scene in Raiders of the Lost Ark where Indiana Jones steps out onto the invisible bridge. It is such a great picture of faith to me. Indiana doesn’t really know it’s there, he just believes it’s there. And what he believes becomes evidenced by his willingness to risk.
It wasn’t obvious overnight, but within a few weeks, it started becoming clear that something had changed in my life. I had put all my eggs in His basket! It’s hard to describe the shift in perspective that took place, but I went from wondering if that invisible bridge was there to wondering, “how much weight can this bridge hold?”
The Bible went from a confusing book of rules to a living book of secrets! Revealing the Father God, who almost too good to be true.
“Evangelism” used to be a negative word for me. It was me pushing my beliefs onto people. Painful and fruitless. Obligatory for the believer. But let’s say you had a headache for 10 years and then one day you cut out gluten and your headache went away, you’d be the biggest gluten-free advocate in the world. And that’s kind of how it’s supposed to work I think! Once you’ve experienced that bridge and realize it’s for real, you can’t help but want to share the news!
He has the answer to every problem! He sets the lonely in families. The hopeless get real hope! His provision is tangible, not theoretical. His presence and nearness is a real thing, not a good philosophy. His power, His healing, His love are all real and tangible, not just a nice idea or a mental assent. Evangelism became a deep desire in my heart rather than an obligation.
One more thing that shifted was in my struggle with sin. Gal 5:24-25 says those who belong to Christ Jesus have nailed the passions and desires of their sinful nature to His cross and crucified them there. They’ve died! It’s a daily, over and over process (1 Corinthians 15:31 says, “…I die daily.”) but I can refer back to that chair where I was sitting and see that I had made a decision to die. I gave up control of doing things my way and that I made Him the King of my decisions.
He gets to call the shots! And if it means I have to give away all my possessions and live in a hut, then He is allowed to do that. I trust Him. And if it means that I look like a fool or sound like a fool to people I wish I could impress, He is allowed to do that. I trust Him. And If it means that I don’t get to eat or drink or party like I want, He gets to make that call. I trust Him. And I believe He is good. Even if I lose my life, physically dying in my attempt to obey, I still trust him.
He gets to be King! And the more I let Him call the shots the more I experience His power and grace in my life. How can He prove himself good if we don’t let Him be in charge? I want to encourage you to lay everything down at His feet and trust that He sees you and hears you when you surrender your life to Him!