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I can’t do anything

September 16, 2009

girl_paper_heartGod’s more amazing than I thought.


You know how that goes.

I had this breakthrough in intercession Monday that I’m not sure I have the power to communicate in written word, but – you know me – I’m going to try.

I’ve been of the opinion for some time now that discipleship is something that the believer does. If you’re new, or if you’re coming back, Holy Spirit will dish out a measure of grace for however long He deems appropriate. Weeks, maybe months.

Then, though, it’s up to you. Because Jesus said, “Take up your cross.” At a point, the grace fades and you have to make yourself do it – press into God in prayer and worship no matter what’s going on or how you feel or whether you even really want to. Because it’s difficult. That’s just the way it is.

And no, you can’t ask Him to just sweep through and make it easy again. You have to prove yourself. You have to fight. You have to want it. Asking for the grace back is like asking for training wheels back because you can’t balance on two wheels the first time. Grow up.

Recently, I’ve been trying to respond to a call to intercession. Sometimes it’s electric and sometimes it’s … not. Yesterday it wasn’t, and I was lamenting some of the above to Holy Spirit when He questioned my – for lack of a better term – theology.

I started to explain why it made sense to me when He whispered Ephesians 2:9, “not of works, lest any man should boast.”

That’s the entirety of Ephesians 2:9. I know it’s referring to salvation, but it’s also communicating the heart of God and my paradigm exploded when He connected Ephesians 2:9 to my prayer life.

It was as though He said, “You’re saved by grace and not by works (Ephesians 2:8), so having begun in the Spirit are you being perfected through works (Galatians 3:3)? No, because then you would be able to boast. Not in earning your salvation, but in the measure of your intercession.”

That’s about when my head exploded. We love Him because He first loved us (1 John 4:19). But after that, we can’t go on loving Him in our own strength. There’s no way my tiny, little heart can love Him enough to sustain this relationship.

I sat back and prayed, “I need You to love You through me, ’cause my weak heart can’t begin to see …” (Then I went in the other room and wrote a pre-chorus and a chorus, but that’s another story.)

That doesn’t mean it’s not difficult. You still have to take up your cross, and you still have to die daily. It’s a hard thing that the first and greatest command is to love the Lord with all your heart, but only because we think “guarding” our heart (Proverbs 4:23) means to hide it within ourselves. What if, instead, we give it away to the One who won’t abuse it, and let Him love Him through us?

What really blows me away is that He set it up like that. He could have made it mandatory, and He could have based it on works. He could have pushed me out on the stage of my affection and said, “Dance. Prove yourself. Love Me.” And He would have been perfectly just and deserving to do so. But He didn’t. Instead, He says, “I love you. And I want you to love me, so I’ll show you how and I’ll help you if you want. All you have to do is want to want Me. Ask, and I’ll help you.”

Can you even believe His grace sometimes?

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