Have Thine Own Way, Lord

cryingbaby-452511-mThe lyrics of the old chorus “Have Thine Own Way, Lord,” ran through my mind. It’s a song the prophet Jeremiah would have probably been comfortable singing. Isaiah too a couple generations earlier. It’s essentially a song of submission, a recognition that God is the One in charge.

I think of the many ways our culture has taught people that they are in fact in charge—over their own lives (“I did it my way”), their gender choice, their successes, their future (“you can do whatever you put your mind to”) and even over the planet (“lessen your global footprint”).

So to hear Christians say, Not my way, but God’s, must sound like insanity (nod of recognition to InsanityBytes 😉 ). It is most certainly countercultural, a statement that contradicts what people in government, education, psychology, sociology, business, law, entertainment, or just about any other field are saying.

A couple things are apparent:

1) God doesn’t run a democracy. He’s not asking us finite, mortal, limited creatures what we think He the infinite, eternal, unlimited Creator should do.

2) God’s ways and my ways don’t always sync. If they did, I could sing, Our way is the best way, or some such thing. But no. The fact is, in many circumstances I’d much prefer something different from what God calls me to. There are times, for instance, I’d like to punch people out, or at least curse them out. But God says I’m to leave retribution in His hands and I’m to love my enemy.

I can guarantee you I’d much prefer wealth over poverty, fame over obscurity, pleasure over pain, power over weakness, and other such contrasting values. But God turns what I want on it’s head. He says there is treasure in heaven, that when Christ who is our life is revealed then we will be revealed with Him in glory, that when we are weak then we are strong. In other words, what I want, He says I’ll find in an eternal way.

But that leads to the next points.

3) God’s ways are better.

4) God doesn’t think short term.

5) He isn’t trying to placate a crying child. He’s forming disciples.

Children are the ones who grab the toy only to throw it to the floor a second later. They want what they want, but they don’t actually know what they want. In fact they can scream and cry, but they can also be easily distracted so that they forget why they were so upset moments ago.

God isn’t trying to appease our demands by promising better things in heaven. What He wants to give us starts right now. He wants us to look forward to the treasure in heaven, but He also wants us to experience the riches of knowing Jesus here and now.

He wants to mold us in the likeness of His Son.

He wants us to enjoy the power of the Holy Spirit in our lives when we’re at the end of our own resources. He wants us to experience the peace that surpasses understanding when we trust Him who knows us and loves us.

So with a thankful heart, I sing, Have thine own way, Lord:

Have Thine own way, Lord,
Have Thine own way;
Thou art the Potter,
I am the clay.
Mould me and make me
After Thy will,
While I am waiting,
Yielded and still.

Have Thine own way, Lord,
Have Thine own way;
Search me and try me,
Master, today.
Whiter than snow, Lord,
Wash me just now,
As in Thy presence
Humbly I bow.

Have Thine own way, Lord,
Have Thine own way;
Wounded and weary,
Help me, I pray.
Power, all power,
Surely is Thine,
Touch me and heal me,
Savior divine.

Have Thine own way, Lord,
Have Thine own way;
Hold o’er my being
Absolute sway.
Fill with Thy Spirit
Till all shall see
Christ only, always,
Living in me.
— Adelaide Addison Pollard, 1907

Published in: on March 13, 2015 at 7:34 pm  Comments Off on Have Thine Own Way, Lord  
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