Romans 14:8 (New King James Version)
For if we live, we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord. Therefore, whether we live or die, we are the Lord’s.
The question is what are we living for? Or who are we living for? If we claim to be born again and a follower of Jesus Christ that means that we are living for Him. It is not simply based on a decision to raise our hand during a service and fill out a card. The decision to begin to follow Jesus is simply that, it is a beginning.
Jesus calls us to abide in Him. All of those Jesus called as disciples during His earthly ministry left all they had and followed Him. When Jesus invited Peter, James, Andrew, and John to follow Jesus they left their nets and committed their lives to Him. They had no idea when they began the journey of following Jesus and walking with Him how their lives would change and be impacted for all eternity.
Here the apostle Paul says if we live, we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord. Jesus must consume every area of our lives. To encounter and experience all that Christ has for us we must surrender. Many times there are things God is calling us to surrender and we are afraid to let go and lay them down. We may believe that some of these things are the foundation and essential to our happiness and contentment. But anything in life can become an idol when it becomes the focus and takes the place that Jesus deserves.
But if we are living and dying to the Lord that means our entire being is given over to Him. Before this verse the apostle Paul writes that none of us lives or dies to ourselves. Jesus said that we are to love the Lord thy God with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength. That means everything we are belongs to God. If we are holding anything back from the Lord we are robbing ourselves of all that God has for us. Often in our lives before the Lord will release greater blessing and increase, He calls for a greater measure of surrender.
The Christian life and journey is one of continual surrender. Of laying all things down for the Lord for His glory and His honor. May we let go of pursuing this world and its desires. May we simply desire to be led by the Holy Spirit in all things. Jesus paid the ultimate price so that you and I could be totally set free from our sins. May we give all that we have for His purpose and His kingdom.
Father, today I surrender all to you. I pray whether I live or die that all things are in your hands. Remove any idol from my life that would hinder my love for you and hinder what you desire to do in my life. I give you permission to fully prune me and bring forth your purposes and will in my life. Help me today to let go of controlling my life and fully give control of who I am to you. May my life simply be used to honor and glorify your name. In the mighty name of Jesus, Amen!