I learned something this morning that has been 18 years coming. (Well, more like 62 years, but more intensely for the last 18 years) For most of my journey with Christ, I have sought to approach Him by doing things, improving things about myself that were within my control. There was always more I could learn, more I could sacrifice. I could give more, serve more, love more. Things in my life now have developed to the point that I don’t know that this is still the case. I’m no longer sure that I am capable of bringing about the changes that need to take place. In other words, I have no more stuff to give – it’s all given. I have no more time to give – it’s all given. I might even go so far as to say I have no more heart to give – it is given fully. The only reason I have more love to give is because love is infinite and can continue to grow as it is perfected in Him.
That’s the point of this post. It dawned on me just this morning that I’ve reached the point in my journey where I’ve given all that is within my control, and from here on it is truly up to Him. It is up to Him to make the most of what sacrifice I have been able to make. It is up to Him to sanctify the meager gift I have offered. I can certainly continue to be willing and to learn to be more humble, but it’s beyond my own understanding to be able to do that. I can and must continue to seek to know Him, but the low hanging fruit is all picked. I need Him to lift me up to the higher branches where the sweetest fruit grows.
I was sharing this with a friend this morning, and it further dawned on me that this experience is described by the story of the brother of Jared in Ether chapters 2 and 3. The brother of Jared and his people had done all they could. They had arrived at the great sea. They had built the barges in faith. They had recognized the problem of lighting. The brother of Jared went up on the mountain and extracted – I’m sure at great effort – the 16 stones. After that, though, he knew that only the Lord could provide the full solution. Only the Lord could sanctify their efforts and bring about the completeness of His will for them. It was at that point that his faith was complete enough that he could not be withheld from within the veil.
I know we all have different points at which we realize that we’ve given and consecrated all that we have; at which we’ve done all that we can and we have to turn the rest over to the Lord, because all of the low-hanging fruit is picked clean. At that point, perhaps the Lord will say, “Welcome, my child. You have done well! Now, we can really get to work!” At this point, we must continue to walk in faith, seeking His will for us and for His Zion. If we do this, the very heavens themselves will not hold the blessings that will shower upon us. We will become like the nondescript violin that came alive at the touch of the master’s hand.
May the Lord bless us in our efforts. May we each seek after our Lord’s Zion first in our hearts, then in our family, and then in the world. The heavens are open. Angels are rejoicing as we forsake the traditions of our fathers and approach the Lord seeking the true faith – the fullness of His righteousness. I know this is true, and I declare so in the name of Jesus Christ.