Has God ever asked you to do something? Maybe some thing that is just plain hard, or maybe something that even seems impossible? I know for me, this has been a huge part of my spiritual journey.
I got radically saved two and half years ago. Before I met Jesus, I was a prisoner to the Hollywood scene. I was on an MTV show dating a teen heartthrob, I was a model, and I was living the so-called “dream” of fame, beauty, and worldly success. But deep down I was dying, broken, so full of pain and lies from being in an abusive relationship, and suffering severely from depression, an eating disorder, and alcoholism. It was in that state that Jesus found my little life, set me free from it all, and took me from dead to ALIVE in Him in a moment. I gave my life to this Man who paid it all for me, the One who loved me and died for my sake even when I rejected Him.
So in giving my life to Jesus, that meant my life now had to look different. He showed me His love; His love that held nothing against me, but now it was my job to CHOOSE to love Him back. He gave me His “yes”, therefore I now had to give Him mine. He gave me His life, now I had to give Him mine.
Over the next few years, the Lord taught me what choosing to love and obey Him looked like. I had to say “yes” to giving up modeling, completely. I had to say “yes” to setting aside my friends in that world, including the boyfriend I had been with for years. I had to say “yes” to joining Desperation Leadership Academy because the Lord was calling me to really give my life to knowing Him. I had to say “yes” to early morning prayer meetings. I had to say “yes” to working for free when I used to make tons of money. Then I had to say “yes” to getting rid of what I thought beautiful was- my fake eyelashes that I had wore every day, my bleach blonde hair, hair extensions, tanning. Then I had to say “yes” to gaining weight and weighing what He wanted me to weigh. I had to say “yes” to giving up my Facebook, my twitter, Instagram, all the things that gave me affirmation about how “awesome” I had been. I had to say “yes” to leaving everything from my past life. These were all things that defined who I was before, and I didn’t know who I was without them! I truly had to give up myself and it was some of the hardest things I have ever done.
Matthew 16:24 says, “Then Jesus said to His disciples, ‘If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it.’”
I had this verse on the wall right by my bed, and every morning Jesus reminded me to take up my cross, to deny who I used to be so that I would find who I really was in Him. He was so patient and tender with me, but He required my life. I had already encountered His power, and so I knew that if I would just keep saying “yes” I would get Him and find true life in Him.
I can’t tell you how hard it was for me to say “yes” to some of those things, things I never thought I could live without holding on to. I cried the whole way through, but in Philippians 3:8 Paul says, “Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of ALL things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ.”
Do you realize that when you say “yes”, “yes” to giving up the things of the world, YOU GET HIM! It truly is a great exchange! He is a Man, He is a Person, the most amazing, kind, patient Person you could ever imagine. He has love unending. He created the heavens and the earth. He knows all things. He died on a cross for ME, that I could be reconciled to Him even though I had been a sinner and didn’t deserve it. He is really coming back and we get to rule and reign with Him for billions and billions of years dependent upon how much we love Him on this side of eternity! Are you kidding me? Why would I not give EVERYTHING for this Man. Even though giving up those things was temporarily hard, I get more of Jesus for eternity. There is NO cost when it comes to love. I would give it all up to know and love that Man more. Those other things I used to hold on to, I count them as trash when I compare it to what I get in Him.
Because I have said “yes” continually to Jesus’ leading in these small areas of my life, He can now trust me to say “yes” in the big things. Luke 16:10 states, “Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much.” God wants to USE you, He doesn’t want to just take things from you, but He wants YOU, yes you, to be a vessel and a leader in this generation. Did you know that God actually used a donkey in the Bible to bring about His purposes on the earth? If God can use a donkey, don’t you think He can use your little laid-down life? He owns everything! All the money is His, He can speak a word and make the world, so don’t you think He can make anything He wants happen? He just needs those who will say “yes”. He needs the laid-down lovers that will surrender their whole life to Him. He is looking for the willing ones that He can use for the huge things He wants to release on this earth. But He does require EVERYTHING. He requires the “yes” of your entire life.
Matthew 22:14, “For many are called, but few are chosen.” God calls everyone, but the ones that are chosen, the ones that will take this world for God and do the unthinkable for the Kingdom, are the ones that will simply say “yes” to His call. The chosen ones are the willing ones. Will you be one that says, “yes”, no matter how impossible it may seem, no matter how weak, broken, and disqualified you think you are, will you still say “yes” to the purposes of God? He is calling the leaders, the revivalists, the radical lovers that will take nations and take the world for Him. Will you be the willing one that He will choose to do the impossible?
One day I was praying to God and I asked Him, “Lord, what will you give me? What will you give me for your Kingdom?” He immediately said to me, “Melissa, I will give you Southern California. Then once we get that, I will take the entire secular world. This will be the event that prepares my Bride across the earth and ushers in my return.” God wants to do this, God will do this, and all He requires is my “yes”, not because I’m great, but because He wants to do it and He is looking for those who will partner with Him. What will you believe God for in your life? Give Him the “yes” of your little life and just see what He can do.