more room for me

By February 22, 2012Church

“And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again” (2 Corinthians 5:15).

The story is told of a little boy and his sister riding on a wooden rocking horse.  The little boy turns to his sister and says, “If one of us would get off there would be more room for me.”

That pretty much sums up our challenge.  For the Christ-follower, the process of maturity is not to make more room for me but more room for Him.  We are to look for ways to make more of Jesus and less of ourselves.

It’s not easy.  Our culture breeds selfishness.  From the time we are little, we are told that we deserve a trophy just for showing up.  If we’re not careful, we’ll bring this attitude over into the church.  The church experience becomes about what I prefer.  And we forget a principle fundamental to the Christian lifestyle:

We no longer live for ourselves.

We live for him who died for us.

I had a professor in college who used to say, “When you get Romans, God gets you.”  In other words, when you understand the message of grace and redemption that Paul writes about, you will understand your own life differently.  You will see your decisions in a new light.  Priorities will get rearranged.

I grew up singing a hymn that described well the maturing process God intends for us to go through:

Oh, the bitter pain and sorrow
That a time could ever be,
When I proudly said to Jesus,
“All of self, and none of Thee.”
All of self, and none of Thee,
All of self, and none of Thee,
When I proudly said to Jesus,
“All of self, and none of Thee.”

Yet He found me; I beheld Him
Bleeding on th’ accursed tree,
And my wistful heart said faintly,
“Some of self, and some of Thee.”
Some of self, and some of Thee,
Some of self, and some of Thee,
And my wistful heart said faintly,
“Some of self, and some of Thee.”

Day by day His tender mercy,
Healing, helping, full and free,
Brought me lower while I whispered,
“Less of self, and more of Thee.”
Less of self, and more of Thee,
Less of self, and more or Thee,
Brought me lower while I whispered,
“Less of self, and more of Thee.”

Higher than the highest heaven,
Deeper than the deepest sea,
Lord, Thy love at last has conquered:
None of self, and all of Thee.”
None of self, and all of Thee,
None of self, and all of Thee,
Lord, Thy love at last has conquered:
None of self, and all of Thee.”

May each of us strive to live in such a way that we make much of Him.