Jesus prepares His disciples for His death.
If there is anything between you and the Lord, He will pinpoint it and ask you to give it up. He wants total commitment -- nothing less.
That does not mean you cannot be committed to other things. It just means that He wants nothing to be higher on your priority list than He is.
A husband must be committed to his wife and children. A professional must be committed to his job. But all must be committed to the Lord first.
The rich young ruler learned this in a very painful lesson. We can learn from his experience: Put the Lord first.
· As an expression of your commitment to the Lord, offer Him this psalm of praise:
Because Your lovingkindness is better than life,
My lips shall praise You.
Thus I will bless You while I live;
I will lift up my hands in Your name. . . .
When I remember You on my bed,
I meditate on You in the night watches.
Because You have been my help,
Therefore in the shadow of Your wings I will rejoice.
My soul follows close behind You;
Your right hand upholds me
· Pray this passage of confession to the Lord:
You do not desire sacrifice, or else I would give it;
You do not delight in burnt offering.
The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit,
A broken and a contrite heart --
These, O God, You will not despise
· Confess any sins that the Holy Spirit brings to your mind. Now pause to pray to the Lord this affirmation of your faith in Him:
I am not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep what I have committed to Him until that Day (2 Timothy 1:12).
· As you make your requests known to the Lord, pray for:
· greater commitment to Christ,
· the work of missions in the Middle East,
· your activities for the day.
· Offer this closing prayer to the Lord:
May You, the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after we have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle us. To You be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen (based on 1 Peter 5:10-11).