“Morning by morning, O Lord, you hear my voice”
“Consecrated, Lord, to Thee”
(Please read 1 Corinthians 10:31 and Philippians 3:8)
We may sometimes think of “consecrated” Christians as being those who preach full-time. But the term applies to all those who have been “sanctified” – that is, set apart as God’s people, or dedicated to God. So it covers all of us. Miss Francis Ridley Havergal, however, longed for a greater degree of dedication to the Lord and his work when she wrote the well-known song, “Take My Life and Let It Be,” in 1874. And we can well share that longing.
God required the Israelites to consecrate every firstborn male, human or animal, to him, for, he said, “It belongs to me” (Exodus 13:1-2, NAS). By becoming Christians, we declare that we belong to the Lord, so we are all consecrated. Even so, there are many who simply stand out as far more dedicated to the Lord’s work than the average disciple.
For example, look at the Christians in Macedonia. Paul could hardly use enough superlatives in describing them and their generosity. He said they gave, of their own accord, “beyond their ability” and “begged” with “much entreaty” to participate in supporting poor saints. All this happened when they themselves were “in a great ordeal of affliction” and “deep poverty,” yet they possessed an “abundance of joy.” The key to their attitude was that “they first gave themselves to the Lord” (see 2 Corinthians 8:1-6).
If we give ourselves to the Lord, we should be glad to give of ourselves for Him – not just money but time and sweat and kindness and encouragement and words of our salvation and praise and any other good thing. That’s consecration.