Have you ever asked your child to do a job or task and it was a half-hearted attempt? Like asking your child to go clean their room and only to go in there later and find they’ve chucked everything under the bed or into the closet. In my book that just doesn’t fly. When I ask my child to do a job, I expect complete compliance.
In thinking of this concept, Isn’t that not how we sometimes treat our faith in God? We are going through the motions but our attempt is half-hearted. We go to church, we try to be a good person, we serve or help out in this or that ministry and we think we’re all good.
The other day I read in Hosea 6:6 . . .For I desire steadfast love and not sacrifice, the knowledge of God rather than burnt offerings. This means that God wants our “hearts” more than anything, not just our outward obedience. He wants “all” of us, not our half-hearted attempts. God wants us to know him and be known by him. This happens when we diligently seek after him.
In Jeremiah 29:13 it reads…You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. The key word here is ALL. Yes, no half-hearted attempts. Seeking requires active participation. It’s searching the scriptures and crying out to him. As we spend time with God in his word, we begin to have a greater knowledge of who he is, we experience his great love for us and what he desires for us. This is the knowledge he wants us to have, knowledge of himself.
In my own life I went years and years of going through the motions. And by merely going through the motions there was no life. My faith was dead. I was not spending time in the word or getting to know God. This is what Satan wants. Father please forgive me. We will never grow in our relationship with God if all we do is hear the word preached on Sundays. The God we serve arose from the dead, he is alive and active. And through the power of Holy Spirit, he actively participates in the lives of those who seek him and are willing to do what he is calling us to do, but the key is we need to be “active” in the process.
We all want to have a purpose in this life. If we don’t we do exactly what? Nothing. We have an aimless existence. God has created each and every one with a purpose in mind and he has a plan for each of us. The question is will we seek after what that is, His purpose. In Revelation 3:15 it says…I know your deeds, that you are neither cold or hot. I wish you were either one or the other. So because you are lukewarm, neither hot or cold I am about to spit you out of my mouth. That is so clear to me. God hates half-hearted attempts and yet as believers that is so often what we give him.
It’s like giving God the table scraps of our lives, the burnt offerings which are worthless. We live to please ourselves and think we are doing the trick with our occasional Sunday appearance. We seek to please ourselves and our desires rather than seeking first the kingdom of God. It’s like putting the cart before the horse. It’s like seeking the reward without putting in the work. We need to have the pulling power of the Holy Spirit up front and in the lead giving us the will and desire to do what pleases God.
Whenever I write things like this I always worry about stepping on toes but then I am reminded that if we are doing what we are supposed to be doing we WILL step on toes. If we are fulfilling the calling that God has on our lives we must take up our cross “daily” to follow him. We will either choose to live for ourselves or we will choose to follow after God. God really makes things simple, we’re the ones who make them complex. He wants our hearts to be fully committed to him.
This was a concept I struggled with for some time. Would God really be serious about up giving up everything to follow him? And the answer he showed me was Yes! He wants all or nothing. No half-hearted attempts. This looks differently for all us because God plan for each one is different. But as we seek him and seek out his purposes he will reveal that to us. He loves us so completely and is calling us to the abundant life only found in him. It’s all or nothing! We get to choose!
Father God I pray that you will ignite the fire in our hearts for you. Yes, you really do want all or nothing. Give us the will and desire to do your work. Help us to burn brightly for you. Thank you for your amazing love for us, a love so strong that it was willing to die for us. Thank you for that sweet Jesus, help us in turn to die to self so that we may fully live for you. All praise to you King Jesus! In your precious name we pray. AMEN