(James 4:7)—"Yield & Obey!"—Pt.1DFO 2224 Comp'd. 4/87
From Dad & Mama's Letters, compiled by Apollos
(See Definitions of complicated words on Pg.16)
1. LONG AGO THE LORD GAVE US A BEAUTIFUL ILLUSTRATION OF WHAT YIELDEDNESS IS IN THE OLDIE-GOLDIE CLASSIC LETTER, "DIAMONDS OF DUST": "Watch the diamonds of dust! They don't try to sparkle & shine. They just let the light shine through them! They don't try to work to shine or move. They're not trying to get anywhere; they're not in a hurry! They just float so quietly on God's air—& only get stirred up when He blows up a storm. But even then they settle back into their place when it's over!" (No.3:17)
2. "THEY TWIST & TUMBLE IN THEIR TOTAL YIELDEDNESS TO THE BREATH OF HIS SPIRIT!—That total lack of any will of their own, just floating on God's air.—Tumbling‚ rolling, scintillating, shining‚ exhilarating, so beautiful!" (No.75:24)
3. THIS SIMPLE LITTLE LETTER ALSO SHOWS US WHY WE NEED TO BE YIELDED TO THE LORD: "The light itself is invisible!—It can only be seen in the reflections of all those little diamonds of dust! People can only see God as we reflect Him, like little diamonds of dust! They have to look at us to see God in our reflection of Him.—God's light can only be seen if you reflect it! So, `Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works & glorify your Father which is in Heaven!' (Mat.5:16) If the dust weren't there, the light couldn't be seen; & if the light weren't there, the dust couldn't be seen! It takes both!" (No.3:9)
4. THE LETTER THEN EXPLAINS SOMEWHAT SADLY‚ "YOU MAY NEVER SEE THE LITTLE DIAMOND OF DUST AGAIN, for some of them just flow into the light, sparkle for a moment, & then vanish back into the darkness. They only have their moment of Truth!" This is then followed by an encouraging & hopeful thought: "But if it could stay in the Lord's Light, it could sparkle its life out to the end‚ like a candlestick that gives light to the whole house until it is finished! The longer that little grain of dust stays in the light, the longer it shines—& the longer it stays a diamond!"—And that's what this lesson is really all about: How to stay in the Lord's Light so that you can continue to be one of His jewels, a yielded & useful tool in His Hands that He can fully use to accomplish His plan & purpose!
5. GOD HAS A VERY SPECIAL PLACE FOR EACH OF US IN HIS KINGDOM‚ & He has a special job, a unique mission for you which only you can fulfil! But there's only one way that you will even be able to find His will for your life—much less be able to fulfil it—& that is to be truly yielded to Him!—Only then will you be able to "let your dust become diamonds that show the beauty of God!", bringing the Lord's wonderful Life, Love & Light to as many folks as you can!
6. AFTER ALL‚ THIS IS WHAT THE LORD HAS HIS CHILDREN HERE FOR IN THE FIRST PLACE: TO WITNESS TO OTHERS so they too can find the Heavenly Love & Salvation that we have found in Jesus!—And the wonderful thing is‚ we don't have to witness & do the Lord's work in our own strength.—In fact, if we do, we'll just make a mess of things!—We just need to yield to Him, to "let go & let God"‚ & He will then do the work through us!
7. PEOPLE HAVE GOT TO SEE JESUS COMING THROUGH YOU! But if your witnessing is too full of you, they'll just go on & figure that what you're saying is a waste of time—no different from what everybody else is preaching. So you can see how important your yieldedness to the Lord is—for your sake, for lost souls' sake & for God's sake! This is why He tells us that it's "not by (your) might, nor by (your) power, but by My Spirit, saith the Lord! For we have this treasure (the Lord & His Love) in earthen (fleshly) vessels‚ that the excellency of the power may be of God, & not of us!" (Zech.4:6; 2Cor.4:7)
8. JESUS EVEN SAID OF OUR WORK FOR HIM, "MY YOKE IS EASY, & MY BURDEN IS LIGHT". (Mat. 11:30) So we don't ever have to worry about carrying too much or pulling too big of a load. We just need to learn to yield to Jesus & let Him do His work through us! For without Him we are nothing & can of our own selves do nothing!—But as we "cast our cares upon Him", we "can do all things through Christ!" Hallelujah! (Jn.5:30; 15:5; 1Pet.5:7; Phil.4:13)
9. JESUS SAYS, "ABIDE IN ME & I IN YOU. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine, no more can ye except ye abide in Me. I am the vine, ye are the branches. He that abideth in Me & I in him‚ the same bringeth forth much fruit, for without Me ye can do nothing." (Jn.15:4,5) This has always been one of my favourite passages, because I knew I was nothing & I could do nothing without the Lord, but that if I'd just abide in Him, He'd bring forth the fruit, the Lord could do it! PTL!
"NOT MY WILL, BUT THINE BE DONE!"
10. TO REALLY FIND THE WILL OF GOD IN OUR LIVES, WE HAVE TO BE TOTALLY YIELDED TO THE LORD! Jesus gave us the best example of yieldedness when He knelt down in the Garden of Gethsemane &, knowing that He would soon face a horrible & cruel death on the cross, prayed, "Not My will, but Thine be done!" (Mat.26:39) Unless we are yielded to the Lord & willing to lay down our lives for Him, we cannot even find what His will is. Submission is the first step. And if we are unwilling to take that step of submitting ourselves to Him, we won't be able to go on to any other steps, & will never accomplish what God wants us to!
11. GOD'S WORD SAYS, "I BESEECH YOU, BRETHREN, THAT YE PRESENT YOUR BODIES A LIVING SACRIFICE‚ holy & acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this World, but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove"—or know—"what is that good & acceptable & perfect will of God." (Rom. 12:1,2) So the first requirement in finding God's will is having no will of your own!—Utter surrender, utter yieldedness to God of your mind, of your body, of your own will!—Then you'll know! As someone has said, "The major part of knowing the will of God is to be prepared to do it before you even know what it is!"
12. IF YOU'RE A CHRISTIAN, IF YOU'RE SAVED & HAVE JESUS IN YOUR HEART, IT'S IMPORTANT THAT YOU REALISE & UNDERSTAND THAT YOU ARE NOT YOUR OWN! Jesus bought & paid for you & your salvation with His Own blood, & you can't just do as you please! (1Pet.1:18‚19) You don't just belong to yourself, you belong to the Lord & to God's Work & to the Family! "Know ye not that ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price! Therefore glorify God in your body & in your spirit, which are God's!" (1Cor.6:19‚20)
13. IF YOU REALLY BELIEVE THE BIBLE, THAT JESUS BLED & DIED ON THE CROSS TO SAVE YOU FROM HELL & TO GIVE YOU ETERNAL HEAVENLY LIFE, you should be willing to do anything for Him! —Go through anything for Him just in plain thanks for your salvation! Amen? Your life belongs to Jesus! He bought & paid for you, so how can you not give Him your all & surrender your will to His?
A SEXY BRIDE WITH NOTHING TO HIDE!
14. ALTHOUGH HE BOUGHT & PAID FOR US WITH HIS OWN BLOOD, Jesus didn't buy us just to make us His slaves, His servants who have to do what He commands. He said, "I have not called you servants, but friends!" (Jn. 15:15) He wants us to be His friends, who do His will not just because we have to, but because we want to, because we love Him. In fact, He not only wants us to be His friends, but His Beloved‚ His Bride!—"That we should be married to Him Who is raised from the dead‚ that we should bring forth fruit unto God!" (Rom.7:4)
15. HIS SAVED CHILDREN, HIS GENUINE CHURCH‚ ARE HIS BRIDE, & He, like any husband, wants a yielded & submissive wife whose desire is to love & please Him. But sad to say, most so-called Christians today—like a lot of independent & rebellious System wives—are married to Him in name only, & have forsaken Him & His Love & His Word in their hearts! They maybe go to a church building once a week, but they never really fellowship with Him, don't go to bed with Him, don't have sweet love-making & thrilling spiritual ecstacies with Him.—And they certainly don't want to conceive & bear & have to take care of any more children for Him!
16. THIS IS WHY GOD HAS IN THESE LAST DAYS RAISED UP OUR FAMILY‚ HIS SEXY NEW CHURCH!—A young New Bride bursting with energy & a passionate love for her Bridegroom! He wants a Bride that He can fuck the daylights out of with His Spirit & His Word, His Seed & His Love, to make her productive & fruitful, to bear everlasting children for the eternal Kingdom of God! "For herein is My Father glorified," Jesus said, "that ye bear much fruit!" (Jn.15:8)
17. TO BE THE KIND OF BRIDE HE WANTS, YOU'VE GOT TO FIRST OF ALL HAVE ENOUGH FAITH IN HIS LOVE TO OBEY & COME, & strip off all of the outer garments of appearances, cover-ups & false fronts, & expose yourself to the Lord, totally yielding yourself to Him in submission & humility. You must be willing to be stripped bare before Him. You're just you, & that's what He wants‚ you!—All of you!
18. SO YOU'VE GOT TO DROP EVERYTHING, FORSAKE ALL, COME TO HIM & be willing to be stripped bare, abandon all false cover-ups, & just expose yourself to Him. And then you've got to let Him make love to you & fill you with His Spirit & His seed, the Word of God, which, when conceived in responsive hearts, brings forth fruit, new-born babes into the Kingdom of God! Hallelujah!
GIVE GOD A CHANCE!
19. THE LORD KNOWS THAT THE MORE YIELDED & OBEDIENT WE ARE TO HIM‚ THE MORE HE CAN THEN USE US, & the happier we will be & the greater blessing we'll be to others! There is always so much urgent soul-saving work that He wants & needs done, but He has trouble finding willing workers.—"For the harvest is plenteous, but the labourers are few!" (Mat. 9:37) He's more willing to use, empower, anoint & pour His blessings out upon us than we are to receive them. He's usually just waiting for us to step aside & get out of the way so that He can take over & use us to do things His way! But until we surrender our own will & fully submit to Him & His will, He'll never be able to use us as much as He'd like to.
20. SO SUBMISSION & OBEDIENCE ARE PROBABLY THE MAIN THINGS THE LORD IS TRYING TO TEACH US MOST IN OUR LIVES.—This is what He's trying to get us to do all our lives long, to submit to His will & to be obedient to Him, which are practically one & the same thing!—You can't very well be yielded to the Lord unless you're obedient, nor can you be obedient unless you're yielded!—It takes both!
21. THE WHOLE EXPERIENCE OF OUR WHOLE EXISTENCE IN THIS LIFE IS LIKE A SCHOOLING to teach us what we need to know about the Lord & Salvation & about service‚ submission & obedience to Him & keeping His loving rules & His Law of Love.—And the first & most important thing the Lord is trying to teach us is submission in spirit, to have a submitted & willing heart, yielded & receiving instead of resentful, wilful & rebellious!
22. HORSES MAKE A GOOD ILLUSTRATION: SOME HORSES CAN BE RIDDEN WITHOUT A BIT OR A BRIDLE OR SPURS OR ANY OF THESE THINGS THAT ARE USED TO MAKE THEM OBEY & do what you want them to do. If they are well-trained & used to their master & submitted to him‚ he can control them with just a halter, without placing a bit in the horse's mouth. A horse can either love its master & gladly & willingly obey & do its duty & its job, or it can be stubborn & wilful, & chafe at the bit & snap & bite & kick & be very unhappy, "kicking against the pricks" instead of yielding. (Acts 9:5)
23. THIS IS WHY THE LORD TELLS US, "BE YE NOT AS THE HORSE, OR AS THE MULE, WHICH HAVE NO UNDERSTANDING‚ whose mouth must be held in with bit & bridle‚ lest they come near unto thee!" (Psa.32:9) The Lord "loves a cheerful giver" (2Cor.9:7)‚ & He seldom ever forces anyone to do His will. In fact, if we won't do His will for love, because we love Jesus, He'd just as soon get somebody else who will! He wants & prefers volunteers who freely & willingly submit to Him & His slightest bidding.
24. BUT IF YOU'RE LIKE A STUBBORN HORSE OR MULE, & YOU STUBBORNLY CLING TO YOUR OWN WAYS & refuse to submit to the Lord, you'll never really be what God wants you to be or accomplish what God wants you to do! You'll be worse than a "has-been", you'll be a "could-have-been" who never was! As someone once said, "God holds us responsible, not just for what we have, but for what we could have; not for what we are, but for what we might be." But if you'll just yield to Him & be willing to accept whatever He wants‚ then you don't need to worry. He'll mightily bless you & you'll be whatever He wants you to be! PTL!
25. IT REMINDS ME OF WHAT AN UNKNOWN SUNDAY SCHOOL TEACHER SAID TO A LOWLY TEENAGE SHOE SALESMAN THAT HE HAD LED TO THE LORD IN BOSTON. He said, "Dwight L. Moody, there is no limit to what God can do with a man who is yielded & willing to do His will!" Moody looked him in the eye & replied, "By the grace of God, I am determined to be that man!" And he was! A short while later he moved to Chicago where he began preaching the Gospel & witnessing to others, & was soon so thrilled to be able to lead other folks to Jesus‚ that he quit the shoe business & began serving the Lord fulltime! He went on to become one of the World's greatest evangelists, with literally tens of thousands of eternal souls won as a result!
26. BUT WHAT IF MOODY HAD NOT DETERMINED TO YIELD TO THE LORD?—What a sad loss it would have been not only to himself, but to literally millions who heard the Gospel through his ministry! Well, the same holds true for each of us: If we are not yielded & open to God's will in our lives, & willing to do whatever He may ask of us, we'll never become what God wants us to be!—And if we're not what He wants us to be, we will never be able to accomplish what He wants us to do.—Which could be very sad, not only for us personally, but also for all those that the Lord wants us to somehow help or reach with His Love.
27. "BUT", YOU MAY ARGUE, "I COULD NEVER DO ANYTHING GREAT FOR THE LORD LIKE MOODY DID!—I'm no flaming evangelist or outstanding soul-winner!" Well, neither was Moody to begin with! He was just a poor farm boy & a below-average student who became bored with life on the farm & so moved to the big city. After several weeks in the city, he set a new goal for himself—to become a big businessman & to make $100,000. Giving his life to God's service was the last thing on his mind!
28. IN FACT, WHEN MOODY WAS FIRST SAVED, HE WAS SO COMPLETELY IGNORANT OF GOD'S WORD & TRUTH‚ that when he went before a church committee to see if they would accept him, he was refused membership! His Sunday School teacher later wrote of him. "I can truly say (& in saying it I magnify the infinite grace of God as bestowed upon Mr. Moody), that I have seen few persons whose minds were spiritually darker when he came into my Sunday School class, or one who seemed more unlikely ever to become a Christian of clear, decided views of Gospel truth, still less to fill any sphere of extended public usefulness!"
29. BUT WHEN HE FOUND JESUS, & HE REALISED HOW MUCH THE LORD HAD GIVEN FOR HIM, THEN HE DETERMINED TO GIVE HIS LIFE TO THE LORD TO DO WHATEVER GOD WOULD ASK OF HIM. The Bible tells us, "Draw nigh to God, & He will draw nigh to you!" (James 4:8) This is the secret of success of not just Moody, but of every truly great man or woman of God whom He has ever used: They drew close to the Lord & relied solely upon Him & His power & His Word for guidance, strength & inspiration.
30. DESPITE ALL OF OUR FAULTS, WEAKNESSES & INABILITIES, THERE REALLY IS NO LIMIT TO WHAT GOD CAN DO WITH US if we will simply turn our lives completely over to Him & be willing to let Him make us what He wants us to be! Of course, that is a very big "if", because we each have our own free will, & we can choose to either yield to Him & "seek first the Kingdom of God" (Mat.6:33), or we can seek first our own desires & our own plans & our own ways. The choice is ours—& whether or not we have His full blessing & His help will depend on whether or not we are willing to give Him first place in our lives.
31. BUT THE TROUBLE WITH MOST CHRISTIANS TODAY IS THAT THEY SEEM TO BE MORE CONCERNED ABOUT HAVING GOD ACCEPT WHAT THEY WANT TO DO than they are about accepting what God wants them to do! They're trying to put their programme across to God‚ to get Him to sign His name, His approval, to their plans. But the real test of yieldedness is: Are you willing‚ not to present your programme to God for His signature?—Not even to be presented with God's programme for your signature?—But are you willing to sign a blank sheet of paper & let God fill it in without your even knowing what His programme is going to be?
32. IF YOU'RE WILLING TO BE WHAT GOD WANTS YOU TO BE—not what you are, but what God wants you to be—then He can mightily use you! God knows you can't make it yourself.—You just have to turn your life, your mind, your heart, your everything over to the Lord & let Him make it for you! When you finally get to the point where you just surrender to Him & give up & let go & let God, then God has a chance to step in & do it!—And He will! Just give Him a chance!
33. WHEN WE'VE YIELDED & SUBMITTED OUR ALL TO THE LORD, THEN WE DON'T NEED TO WORRY ABOUT ANYTHING.—Our entire lives are in His Hands, under His loving care, & the Enemy has nothing that He can get ahold of or lay claim to. In fact, to really overcome the Enemy‚ submission is exactly what the Lord requires. He says, "Submit yourselves to God‚ resist the Devil, & he will flee from you!" (Jam.4:7)
34. BUT AS LONG AS THERE'S ONE LITTLE DARK UNYIELDED CORNER OF YOUR LIFE that you're not willing to yield to the Lord, if there's one little part that you refuse to surrender, the Enemy can bother you in that one little thing, plague you with that one little thing. This is why God's Word says‚ "Neither give place to the Devil!" (Eph.4:27)
35. I'M REMINDED OF THE STORY OF HUDDERSFIELD: A rich landlord desired to buy an entire village, & finally he bought every piece of land in the area.—That is, all except one little plot! For there was one stubborn farmer who refused to sell his tiny piece of land, & nothing would change his mind! The wealthy land owner even offered the farmer much more money than his little piece of property was actually worth, but the old farmer‚ fond of his land, absolutely refused to sell! The landlord finally gave up, but encouraged himself by saying, "What difference does just one little plot of land make?—I've bought everything else, so Huddersfield is mine!—It belongs to me!" But the stubborn old farmer overheard him & reminded him, "Oh no it doesn't! We own Huddersfield!—It belongs to you & me!"
36. DON'T LET THE DEVIL BE ABLE TO SAY THAT OF YOU TO GOD!: "Aha! Look‚ God! He's yielded everything except this one little thing! So even though he belongs mostly to Thee, a little bit still belongs to me!" To "overcome the wicked one", & to have the "peace of God which passes all understanding", you must commit your all to the Lord. Then, when your will is in perfect harmony with God's will, you are safe under the shadow of His wings, & He will bless you with His perfect peace & Heavenly rest! (1Jn.2:14; Phil.4:7; Psa.91)—Like that dear old hymn says:
"You have longed for sweet peace,
And for faith to increase,
And have earnestly, fervently prayed;
But you cannot have rest or be perfectly blest
Until all on the altar is laid.
Is your all on the altar of sacrifice laid?
Your heart does the Spirit control?
You can only be blest & have peace & sweet rest‚
As you yield Him your body & soul!"
37. SO YIELD YOURSELF TO GOD TODAY!—PRESENT YOUR LIFE ON HIS ALTAR OF SACRIFICE, ASK HIM TO TAKE & USE YOU FOR HIS GLORY, & HE WILL!—As much as you will let Him! "There is no limit!" You are His child‚ & He loves you & will always do His best for you to make you useful & happy in His loving service for others, so that you may bring them the same life & happiness that you have found in Jesus! So do your best for Jesus by yielding to Him today!—Amen? GBY!