“If just a cup of water I place within your hands, then just a cup of water is all that I demand.” Words from the old hymn “Follow Me” have been stirring inside me today. The implications and applications are pretty radical. The author may be referring to the parable of the talents or to Matthew 10:42, either way the message is loud and clear. Everything we have is placed in our hands by God. Everything we so magnanimously donate came from His hand. So I should give it ALL away? My sinful heart did a little push back when I truly pondered this song. “He doesn’t require the whole cup of water back!” “He only said 10% of the water back and maybe a few drops extra for the poor, I can have the rest!!!” “It’s the blessing He gave to ME after all! Right?” Right? Wrong, so woefully wrong. We pat ourselves on the back for our “obedience” in tithing and giving, while hoarding the rest of our time, talent, and treasure for ourselves. Our little self-righteous hearts puff out our chest and count ourselves worthy of the blessings poured out from the Lord. The painful truth is just as the song says…if just a cup of water is all you have then just a cup of water is all that He requires. How are we stewarding the 90% we are keeping? This is NOT about giving more money to the church! Although some wrongly assume since all I have is a cup of water, the Lord must not expect ME to give. It’s about realizing that every drop of that water that He has given us belongs to Him and we will give an account for. Every. Single. Drop.
The song goes on to say, as does the Word of God, to “take your cross and follow close to me.” How can we pick up our cross if our hands are full of cups of water? How can we follow Him if our lives are consumed with how to get more cups? Working for more cups, storing more cups, displaying our cups?
We take up our cross when we are willing to give it all away, to leverage everything we have to follow Him. To be willing to commit every drop in the cup, every cent in my pocket, every minute of the day, every heartbeat of my life for Him. To constantly remind ourselves that everything is His, and what He gives me I am in no way worthy of and should be used to further His kingdom. He wants 100% of your heart. Yes we have to live and pay our bills and provide for our families. But what would it look like if we asked Him to show us how to do those things in a way that honored Him and pointed others to Him? Would you be willing, in a heartbeat, to give it all away? Could you radically change your way of living for the sake of the gospel?
The song closes with “But if by death to living they can Thy glory see, I’ll take my cross and follow close to Thee.” My prayer today, Holy Spirit empower me to pick up my cross and follow close to thee.
-Pat Reed (A beloved of Jesus. A wife, a mother & grandmother. A worshiper. A cancer survivor. Passionate about seeing the lost come to Christ.)