A few days ago I prayed, along with around 200 other Christians, the Methodist Covenant prayer. In case you’re not familiar with it here it is:
I am no longer my own but yours.
Put me to what you will,
rank me with whom you will;
put me to doing, put me to suffering;
let me be employed for you or laid aside for you,
exalted for you or brought low for you.
Let me be full, let me be empty,+
let me have all things, let me have nothing.
I freely and wholeheartedly yield all things
to your pleasure and disposal.
And now, glorious and blessed God,
Father, Son and Holy Spirit,
you are mine and I am yours.
So be it.
And the covenant made on earth,
let it be ratified in heaven.
This prayer always moves me to tears. I was raised in a conservative evangelical church family and it always strikes me that my natural tendency is to identify with the second half of many of those statements: “Put me to suffering”; “laid aside for you”;” brought low for you”;” let me be empty”;” let me have nothing”. These statements closely identify with the crucifixion of Jesus, of picking up our cross daily (Matthew 16: 24). And in many ways I am more comfortable with those statements.
But each of those statements has another component to them. The first section says things like “Put me to doing” “let me be employed for you”; “exalted for you“; Let me be full”; “Let me have all things”. These statements are associated more with the resurrection life and power of Jesus, (Ephesians 1:19-20) often more of a focus within charismatic movements.
But what I see in this beautiful and poweful prayer is that we are called to live in both places; in crucifixion and resurrection, in weakness and strength, in emptiness and fullness.
The prayer starts with “I am no longer my own but yours. Put me to what you will, rank me with whom you will”. And that is our starting place. I am no longer my own but yours. Essentially we are saying “It’s up to you Jesus. Do with us what you will.”
My heart needs to be ready and prepared to go to the highest or the lowest place for Jesus.
How about you?
Which side of the coin are you more comfortable with – crucifixion or resurrection?
Where do you need to embrace the other side of the coin?
Posted by Anna