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What’s your story?

Before you start… take 10 minutes. Pause. I want you to open this song and put it on while you read this…

(REFINER by Maverick City Music)

Ok, let’s go. I’m writing this blog exactly as I wrote it in my journal. All the scribbles and all the notes. I am talking to myself and I am sharing what God has been laying
on my heart. What I experienced was a radical conviction. A life-altering moment. It’s something only God can speak to you about. So when you read this – I am not
teaching or preaching something. I am sharing my heart and trust that God will reveal Himself through it.

“If you have a story to tell about your life- what would it be?” – God

These are the words that God had asked me a few weeks ago and they are still lingering in my heart. What would be my story? Jesus, I wonder how my life would look if it was a movie? What category would it fall in? Who would want to watch it? If it was a book, who would want to read it?
I remember when I was little, I used to play that game where you throw flat rocks into a dam and see how many hops you get. I never got more than two. And 70% of the time it just fell flat in the water. Gosh. I really sucked at that game. That made me wonder – what if this was how my life looked? Will the legacy of my life go beyond just myself? Will it have a ripple effect? Or will it just disappear? Jesus, what if my life has no impact and I’m like that rock that just disappears in the water?

These words kept lingering in my mind…and I asked myself- What does a sacrificial life look like? Then I remembered a passage that God spoke to me about at Colour
this year:

“This is the kind of fast day I’m after:
to break the chains of injustice,
get rid of exploitation in the workplace,
free the oppressed, cancel debts.

What I’m interested in seeing you do is:
sharing your food with the hungry,
inviting the homeless poor into your homes,
putting clothes on the shivering ill-clad,
being available to your own families.
Do this and the lights will turn on,
and your lives will turn around at once.
Your righteousness will pave your way.
The God of glory will secure your passage.
Then when you pray, God will answer.
you’ll call out for help and I’ll say, ‘Here I am.’

Wow, no pressure. I literally read that and my heart felt so heavy.
Before this passage, the Lord is actually exposing the shallow worship of His people. He is basically saying that the only reason “righteous” people fast is to glorify themselves. And the reality is- that is our natural incline. We are all selfish human beings. We do things to shine a light on ourselves because that is the reality of sin.

But God is actually saying that this is not the life He wants us to live. This is not the kind of worship or fast that He is after. The “fast day” He is actually talking about is
not a singular moment of fasting. But it is actually a lifestyle. A lifestyle of worship. To fast means, you are renouncing the natural in order to evoke the supernatural. It is intentionally denying the flesh in order to gain a response from the Spirit. This is a daily choice. We have to constantly CHOOSE to live a life that God is after. A sacrificial life. It won’t come naturally, because we are born in sin. It is an intentional decision to live a life beyond ourselves.

“Do this and the lights will turn on, and your lives will turn around at once.”

This moment right here is where the lights turned on for me.
When I decided that I cannot live a life for myself alone, but that I need to live a life beyond myself. My legacy needs to have a ripple effect. A ripple effect that carries fruit in the deepest of places that I might never see. I am saying yes to a life beyond myself. I am saying yes to a life worth living for others. What are you saying yes to?

If you are refining your craft – let it be to shine a light on others.
If you have a voice – use it to echo the voices of others.
If you have influence – let if be to lift those around you.
If you have a platform – use it to empower the next generation.
Now – back to the song you have been listening to… Did you hear the lyrics? Are you ready for it?
What you need is just an offering
It’s right here, my life is here
And I’ll be a living sacrifice for you
You’re a fire
The refiner
I wanna be consumed
I wanna be tried by fire
You take whatever you desire
Lord here’s my life
Clean my hands, purify my heart
I wanna burn for you, only for You
Take my life as a sacrifice
I wanna burn for you, only for You
Burn me beautiful
Burn me lovely
Burn me righteous
Burn me holy
That is what I am leaving you with.
Have you laid it all down?
Is your life a living sacrifice?
Michelle Van Reenen