graceful resignation

Planning a wedding is a flurry of emotions, expectations, and sparkles. I knew I was going to marry this man, I knew it was God’s will, and I was just so ready to be married. So when we entered the pastor’s office for premarital counseling, I felt like I was just checking another box on my wedding to-do list. But the first words he said to us made me stop dead in my tracks.

“Can you two serve God better as a married couple than you can as single individuals?”

It wasn’t that I hadn’t been taking the whole marriage thing seriously; but his question made every inconsequential decision pale in comparison with this thought. Is this one decision, this answer to a prayer, this marriage union going to lead me to “do all to the glory of God”? (1 Corinthians 10:31)

That was nearly four years ago. And lately I’ve found myself asking the same question. Not about marriage – no doubt about that! – but about other areas of my life.

“Can I serve God better if He gives me ___?”

“Could I serve God more if I do ___?”

“Would I do more for the kingdom if I ___?”

Because here’s where I’m trying to get:

I want to be in a place where I can say that if the answer is “no,” I’m still okay.

(Hint: I’m not there yet.)

Truly, I can’t answer that question about anything in my life. When I emphatically nodded that night, sitting across from the pastor and next to my betrothed, my agreement meant that I hope so. I plan so. I believe so. But we don’t really know. This is where faith comes in, and things get really uncomfortable.

I hope, that if God gave me something that I’ve dreamt of for years, I would serve Him better. I plan to love Him as best I know how and glorify Him with all that I am when He answers that prayer. I believe that what I want is good and healthy and sanctifying and beneficial in so many ways —

But if it’s not, am I okay without it?

Am I willing to gracefully resign my will to His? Can I say, “One thing have I desired of the LORD, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the LORD”? (Psalm 27:4, bold added for emphasis)

It’s not fun. It’s not easy. In fact, it’s one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do. But if Christ is Lord of my life, then I must “count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things.” (Philippians 3:8) He is worth the loss of my desires, my plans, and my goals – no matter how good or godly I think they are.

He knows all things. I only know a little. He sees the end from the beginning. I can only see a little ways ahead. From here until whatever comes next, I want to glorify God with all that is in me, even if that means resigning my will for His.

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