The Silent Partner?
by Beth Parkinson
Presenter, CBN Europe
How prominent is Jesus in your life? Is He front and centre? Or is He the silent partner? Either way, it’s worth unpacking how we treat Jesus and use His name as Lord of our lives.
The Many Names of God
I’ve been following a devotional series about the names of God. God our healer, our banner, our provider, names we’re familiar with, that roll off the tongue, that we include in our prayers as we seek God.
But one that I use the most, possibly with the least thought, is ‘Lord’. But do I really mean it? Do I treat God as Lord in my own life, or just to remind Him of His power when I’m asking Him to do me a favour, like a silent partner in a business deal? Certainly, not all my prayers are that flippant; not every prayer is a request for more things… but I’ve been challenged to weigh my words more carefully.
Matthew 7:21-23 comes as a pretty stark warning that we’re not to call Him ‘Lord’ with our mouth but leave our hearts un-submitted. Not all of us who see Jesus will be recognised by Him as one of his own. That’s strong!
Teaching like this can scare us into thinking that it’s all a guessing game as to whether we’ll make it to heaven, but I don’t believe that it’s there just to keep us on our toes. The verses around this remind us that our lives must be marked by good fruit (vv15-20), and our lives should be built on Jesus as our rock (vv24-27), so we have clues on how it should be applied. We’re not to just talk the talk, say what we think we should, even praying powerful prayers and declaring things in Jesus’ name. This has to be backed up by fruit in our lives. Good fruit. The result of good character.
Do I treat God as Lord in my own life, or just to remind Him of His power when I’m asking Him to do me a favour, like a silent partner in a business deal?
The Well-Lived Life
For me, that easily pushes me into ‘do-good’ mode, but here’s the thing… we’re not to make ourselves good people; we can’t do it through our own effort alone. Verses 24-27 remind us that doing it in our own strength and wisdom will lead to a house that will fall down, but leaning into Jesus, relying on His strength as our foundation to that good, well-lived life, that’s what leads to lasting life.
So, what does it mean to make Him Lord? More than that, what does it mean to make Him Lord in every area of our lives. I can think I’m fairly good at submitting things. Still, over the last few weeks, I’ve been asking God to highlight areas within me that don’t line up with His will, and believe me, God’s been using some crazy ways to highlight where I’m trying to maintain control in my life without even realising it.
So, spend some time today asking God to show you when you’re not leaning on Him. Ask Him to show you where in your life your fruit isn’t what He would want for you. Ask Him, and mean it, where He’s not yet Lord in your life. Then, make some room for Him to answer. It may not be what you expect. But what a joy to call Him ‘Lord’.