“And if your right hand leads you into sin, cut it off and throw it away – for better you lose one part of your body than march your entire body through the gates of sin and into hell.” – Matthew 5:30 (The Voice)
I cannot tell you how many times I’ve thought about this verse and tried to make sense of it.
Some people are really gifted at discerning scripture and picking things out of it.
I am not one of those people, I can assure you of that.
The other day I was reading my devotional “My Utmost For His Highest” by Oswald Chambers and good ole’ Oswald explained it in a way that really made sense to me.
How it makes sense in my brain…
You have things in your life that aren’t of God but appear to you and others as things you need.
But God didn’t ask us to live a life of 95% devotion to Him. He has called us to live lives TOTALLY devoted to Him. 100%.
That means, no matter how ridiculous it seems and how much you think you need it, if it is not of God, it needs to be cut off.
There are so many worthless things in this world that we’ve become immune to! Things that you can try to justify the heck out of, but once you come down to it all, if it’s not glorifying to God, there’s no need for it.
“So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.” – 1 Corinthians 10:31 (ESV)
We cannot come before God whole.
We need to cut off those things that keep us attached to the world. We need to trust that God is going to take our maimed, broken selves and regenerate our limbs.
He wants to grow these new things in us but we must first take the steps to break ourselves.
If we’re not putting ourselves in situations where we would fail in our own power and abilities, then there is no room for Him to create new life in us.
How humbling it is that He has complete power over us and it’s up to Him whether we have that new life!
We can never be the judge of ourselves, we are too biased.
I think deep down, we all think we’re good people at heart.
But the fact is, we were born into sin.
And it was never us that made the first move to becoming a better person.
We had to have this example:
“We love because He first loved us.” – 1 John 4:19 (NIV)
Simple as that.
It’s so simple, that in almost every version of the Bible, those are the exact words.
No fancy extras or dumbing down.
There is no growth without surrender.
By emptying yourself of pride, of the things that seem necessary, you are telling God,
“I am empty without you. You need to fill me for me to experience joy.”
When we’re giving Him all the control and making sure all the credit goes to Him, what can stop us?
Where do our limitations end?