This week during practice at church with friend and leader, Jamey, we got onto a discussion regarding giving glory to the Lord and how sometimes in our everyday lives, instead of giving glory to God, we are giving glory to ourselves. I've been thinking and praying on this the last few days in an effort to come up with words for Sunday's service that talks to a new year and finding it in ourselves to give glory to The One who deserves it; giving glory to God.
Repeatedly the word "consecrate" has come to my heart, and so I have been thinking to dive onto that path a little more deeply. A niggle began Tuesday night during practice when we were singing "Glory to God" (by Steve Fee)... in the song, the words "take my life and let it be" are sung, and that prompted in my head the old hymn, "Take My Life and Let It Be", which was written in 1874 by Frances R. Havergal. The first line of the song goes, "Take my life and let it be, consecrated, Lord, to Thee". From there, the word "consecrate" took hold and what it really means.
To consecrate one's self is a sacred term from the 14th century, and basically means "to devote to a purpose with or as if with deep solemnity or dedication" or "to devote irrevocably to the worship of God by a solemn ceremony". As I prayed over this word, it was put on my heart, what better than to consecrate ourselves at the beginning of the year, make a resolution, if you will, to truly devote to the worship of God? Give glory over to God... raise His name in praise... to truly and wholly consecrate ourselves to him? How awesome that one simple and beautiful word can mean so much and truly capture the essence of how we should be in God's presence.
I love the new songs of today's worship, but sometimes the old hymns really say it so simply... so aptly...
Take my life, and let it be consecrated, Lord, to Thee.
Take my moments and my days; let them flow in ceaseless praise.
Take my hands, and let them move at the impulse of Thy love.
Take my feet, and let them be swift and beautiful for Thee.
Take my voice, and let me sing always, only, for my King.
Take my lips, and let them be filled with messages from Thee.
Take my silver and my gold; not a mite would I withhold.
Take my intellect, and use every power as Thou shalt choose.
Take my will, and make it Thine; it shall be no longer mine.
Take my heart, it is Thine own; it shall be Thy royal throne.
Take my love, my Lord, I pour at Thy feet its treasure store.
Take myself, and I will be ever, only, all for Thee.
Let those words play on your heart as you begin the New Year; consider consecrating yourself to the Lord... truly giving yourself over to the worship of Him... devoting yourself, mind, body, and soul, when you enter into worship with Him. Resolve your days to flow with praise to God, through the good and the bad. Vow to let your movements be movements directed by Him. Your words... your song... be His words, be His song. Our thoughts and deeds should be directed by our desire to praise Him; to pour our hearts and our love out over others as an act of worship to Him. Take my life, Take my will, Take my heart, Take my love... Take me, Lord, take me. Take my life, and let it be, all for You and for Your glory.