Lesson 2 -- first quarter 1997
December 8, 1996
© Copyright 1996, Christian Light Publications
Would you rather give someone a signed blank check or would you rather make him co-signer on your checking account? Under most circumstances, I would prefer to do neither! But having to make a choice, I would opt for the blank check. I would much rather have that person empty my account once than give him the opportunity to do so repeatedly as I put more funds in. Why, any time I would put money in I would know that the other signer could promptly spend away my plans, ambitions and livelihood. No way! Forget it!
"Be it unto me according to thy word." In a sense, with this statement Mary made God co-signer for her life. In another sense, she made Him the sole signer, surrendering her right to sign for herself. This was definitely much more than a one-time, single-check signing option for God. This was clearly more than telling God, "Yes! Of course I would like to bear the Messiah!" With her statement Mary gave God direct say in the whole course of the rest of her life. She would now spend her life according to the Lord's designs and purposes, even though that might mean foregoing hopes, plans and reputation she may have held dear. In our day, millions acknowledge her as the most blessed among women; in her day, we can only try to imagine the opinions and imaginations she had to live with. Nevertheless, "Be it unto me according to thy word."
What about you? Will you "stick you neck out" with a single check and hope the cost isn't prohibitive? Or will you simply turn over the account in its entirety, intending to continue making deposits as though you were still the sole signer? Your answers, my answers, to these questions reveal the concreteness of our commitment, the fullness of our faith, the magnitude of our maturity, the level of our love and the intensity of our integrity. Our answers also reveal our understanding of God's commitment, faithfulness, maturity, love and integrity.
Do we dare think (quiver, quake, fear) that God will take advantage of us? Do we dare view God as a bum and a mooch who will only take, take, take, take?! Go back to the first paragraph and suppose that the co-signer will always put more into the account than I ever will. Would you make him a co-signer? Or what if he had been the one to set up your account in the first place? Ah, our answers certain change quickly if we consider long enough to see a different perspective! Please take some time to meditate on some Bible verses that should help you to a divine perspective:
"...Freely ye have received, freely give" (Matthew 10:8).
"...How shall he not with him also freely give us all things?" (Romans 8:32).
"...The gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord" (Romans 6:23).
"...The LORD will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly" (Psalm 84:11).
"...What hast thou that thou didst not receive?" (1 Corinthians 4:7).
"He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal" (John 12:25).
"And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son" (1 John 5:11).
So what do you think by now? How is your faith and trust in God? Ready? "Be it unto me according to thy word."
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