Last year Seminar 3 was an eye opener for me. The speaker cited Philippians 2:10-11 as the anchor passage wherein Saint Paul magnified the name of Jesus and exclaimed that all creation proclaims the Lordship of Jesus Christ. At the time of the seminar, I hadn’t realized that there was actually a Feast dedicated to the Holy Name of Jesus each January 3rd. Yes, I knew that the name ‘Jesus’ was powerful but it is only in the course of this year that it has dawned on me how I had been sacrilegious. Sounds harsh, huh? However, we are guilty of sacrilege when we do not respect places of God, people of God or also things of God such as the name of God the Son.
I started to do my research and found out that my exclamations of “Geez” was actually a euphemism of Jesus and I say “Geez” alot. Then there was the exclamation of “Gosh” which was a euphemism for “God.” Now, can you imagine being denied entering heaven because of ignorance of the non-reverence of His Holy Name through slangs used, which made you break one of the ten commandments?
The speaker stressed the Lordship of Jesus and also referred to water as being one substance in three different forms. He stated that as we cannot live without water, we also cannot live without God. He stated that the water of God can turn any sinner into a saint when you make God the Lord of your life. He also pointed out that God does not for force Himself to be Lord of your life and that according to Revelation 3:20, He ‘stands at the door and knocks,’ hoping that you let Him in.
He referred to saints who had surrendered themselves such as Saint Augustine who stated that God cannot save us without our help and Saint Paul who stated in Galatians 2:20 that it is no longer him that lives, but Christ in him.”
He pointed out that when we see making God, Lord of your life as an honor, that’s when making Him Lord becomes easier. It is evident that God does not need us to recognize Him as Lord as seen in John 1 and Psalm 19 which shows that God created all things without our help and everything indeed functions perfectly without our help. The speaker referred to us as being branches of the vine and without Him we are nothing as seen in John 15:1-8.
Then he came to the message that most of us found difficult to digest – the fact that there is no middle ground with God so you either accepted Him or not. He cited Deuteronomy 6:15 to stress that God is a jealous God and the need to make Jesus the driver of the vehicle, which symbolized your life. He cautioned against having smaller gods or idols such as power, sex, gluttony, fame, unforgiveness and addictions to name a few which would only make you a slave to sin and urged us to triumph over the struggle mentioned by Paul and live through the Spirit of God as seen in Romans 8.
The speaker concluded by urging us to seek God’s permission in all that we do no matter how seemingly trivial. I have found out that doing that has made me feel lighter and it truly makes the words in the Our Father – “thy will be done” come alive. He warned about being a control freak and making yourself the decision maker without resorting to God. He also cited Philippians 4:6-9 which states that we should not be anxious about anything but “in everything resort to prayer and supplication together with thanksgiving.” He also stressed that humility was key in this submission to God’s will and Lordship, as given by Jesus’ example in his complete submission and by not regarding himself as equal to God.
The person ended on a sombre note with those present, searching their hearts on whether they were ready to really put Jesus in the driver’s seat and to run their lives. This was decision time. It is decision time for you and me. Everyday is a new struggle.
May the God who constantly strengthens us give us the grace to place God at the helm of all our affairs in Jesus name. Amen