“The submission of one’s will is really the only uniquely personal thing we have to place on God’s altar. The many other things we ‘give’ are actually the things He has already given or loaned to us.” Neal A. Maxwell
I once knew a man who was the most righteous and good man I have ever known. He loved people and could not be offended. At the age of 41 and with 8 children he developed cancer. He was loved by so many people from his church and work and community. He wanted to live so badly and he put his faith in God that he would be healed. One morning I was speaking with another mutual friend near his bedside but unaware that my sick friend was listening. I asked this mutual friend why God had not healed him. To my surprise my sick and bed ridden friend over heard me and responded by simply saying, God’s will always outweighs man’s will. He died a short time later. The day before he died when asked by a nurse how he was doing he simple responded “never better”. His attitude always made those around him feel better and to this day he is an example to me of someone who had it figured out…someone who was able to subject his will to that of God’s.
I think most of us have done something in our lives where it only happened because of our sheer will power to make it happen. It could have been, among many other things, training for a sport, completing a marathon, saving a marriage or forgiving an enemy. Each day we continue to call upon our will power to accomplish something. It could be just simply getting up to go to work each morning or sticking to a diet or exercise plan. Our will power is one of the basic building blocks of our character. We forge ahead through life making choices and creating our destiny with our will power always at the forefront acting as an invisible force that somehow directs our actions while it urges us forward.
Since our youth we have been taught that “where there is a will there is a way”. This builds on the idea that our will is strong enough to overcome any obstacle before us. I have found it very interesting that one of the principle requirements and basic tenents of Christianity is to subject this will to that of God’s. Unlike a tyrant or despot however, the subjugation of our will to His is not forced upon us. Instead it is the very act of voluntarily subjecting our will to His that brings the peace and comfort of the Gospel into our lives.
Perhaps a slight twist to what we have been taught in our youth might put things in perspective a little better….Where there is God’s will, there is a way…and the way is Jesus. “Thy will be done” not ours is the ultimate act of faith and one that will bring peace, understanding and perspective to our lives. May we each have that in abundance in our lives this Christmas season.