Monday, February 11, 2019

Witholding Nothing

Recently at church we sang a song called “Withholding Nothing.”  It’s a simple song as far as lyrics as music. It goes as follows:

“I surrender all to you, everything I give to you, withholding nothing, withholding nothing.   I give you all of me.  King Jesus!  My Savior! Forever, I give you all of me.”
We went into it as the last song of the set. I don’t know if you have ever experienced this with the things you are involved in, but I have been on worship teams in our churches for the last 15 years or so – ever since I peeked over John’s shoulders as he was learning piano and his wonderful teacher said, “Heather, you need to learn, too!”  Our worship team in that church was very talented, but lacked a keyboard player.  (Not because they couldn’t all play, but they preferred other instruments!)  They were so very kind to let this new piano player join and play chords with them, and I have loved it ever since.  I have always played keys or piano until we came here.
This worship team is phenomenal in talent.  Once again I am humbled to be a part of it.  This time it’s in a new way for me – as a singer.  It is one of my favorite things I do here.  However, as often happens when something becomes a normal in my life, I tend to critique or file things away for later because I can’t think of it in front of people, or because I have a “better” way of doing it in my mind. Sigh… I am definitely not worshipping but rather just singing or performing. This especially happens when the words are in another language and I can’t always follow what is being said.
However this one was in English, and familiar, so I closed my eyes to sing, and it suddenly hit me. Hard. “Withholding nothing.”
How could I sing this song?  As the words washed over me I found myself praying, “Search my heart, Oh God.”  And he, in his vast love for me, started showing me all the things I withhold; all the things I refuse to surrender to him and not trust him with.
Our children. Our money. Our future here.  This church.  My time. My reputation. My marriage.  My hopes.  My dreams.
As I go into the new year I get this sense that God is asking me if I really mean those words.  It comes with a combination of a feeling that I am to be a life-giver this year rather than the cynical, critical person I tend to be in and of myself.  How do those things work together?  Can I truly hold tightly on to my own things – my own self – and be a life-giver?  A truth – speaker? Can I trust him enough to make this statement to him?  Lisa Bevere, one of my favorite writers right now, recently blogged that in a moment of passion in church she once asked God to excavate her heart.  Suddenly, panic stricken at what she said, she tried to backtrack.  But God had other plans. 
Can I truly ask God to help me with hold nothing?  
Maybe the better question is, “Can I not?” 
What is God asking you in this new year?
(Originally published Jan 2018)

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