Who is this coming up from the wilderness
    leaning on her beloved? Song of Songs 8:5

This morning I caught myself praying some sort of twisted prayers… “Jesus, make me like ‘this’ so that I can do this.” If you saw what I had asked for which was really just that I would love well, you probably wouldn’t be very shocked. It sounds like an honorable prayer… like something that would be good to pray. But I felt the Holy Spirit tap on my shoulder because in that request was a hidden agenda that I had somehow missed.  He started to talk to me about Saul and David and how Saul always had an agenda and David just loved. He just loved and obeyed and that was it….

In my head came images of my time in Kansas City, sitting in the then-blue chairs during my internship and feeling the presence of God on my heart. All of that time I got to waste on loving Jesus with no agenda. It was before I was singer, before I was a prayer room team leader, before I led in the student internship. I can’t tell you how amazing that time was for me and how much it changed my life. But along the way ambition and the need to feel in control of my life kicked in. It came on me subtly. We can always use the excuse that we are “building the kingdom” and I guess this is true but is God really pleased with our service if it’s not done completely out of love for Him?

As I was reading my 1998 version of Mike Bickle’s Song of Songs manual, something he said hit me,

She sees her strengths as that which can hinder her in her deep life in the Holy Spirit unless they are consciously submitted to Him

I don’t know if you subconsciously do this but I think I can take some parables out of context like the parable of the talents and believe it’s all up to me when God gives us a gifting or “talent”. But I’m feeling more and more that as we lay those things down and allow Him to fill us back up with Him, He can actually use us to build His kingdom through that gifting. It’s like we completely empty ourselves of anything that is out of our own ability and ask Him to fill us with Him so that true anointing can flow. Not only in a skill but in relationships, friendships, creativity, career, communication… it all works the same way.

Oh God, that I would learn to allow You to be my strength and to not withhold anything that is myself from You.