“For whoever shall do the will of my Father
who is in heaven, the same is my brother, and sister, and mother.”
A popular singer many years ago, Paul Anka wrote the song, “My Way” for another popular singer to record. The singer who made this song so famous was Frank Sinatra. Anka stated that in this song he tried to express the sentiments of the society of his day which he saw as the “Me generation”.
The words of the song capture the reflections of an older person reviewing his past and taking satisfaction from the fact he lived as he pleased and did things in life, “My Way”.
The Christian message is the very opposite of this famous song by Sinatra. We read in our verse today the very foundation of Christian truth. Jesus states that to be His follower we must surrender our will to that of God the Father. This means that my family, my health, my wealth, and whatever else I possess is placed into the hands of God for His will to be done.
In his book, The Great Divorce, C. S. Lewis says, “There are only two kinds of people in the end: those who say to God, ‘Thy will be done,’ and those to whom God says, in the end, ‘Thy will be done.’”
The comment by Lewis gets to the heart of the matter. People in this world either bow the knee to the Lord and submit to whatever He brings into their lives or else they keep their necks stiff and follow a course in life that they map out for themselves, a journey that does not include the God Who made them.
In the writings of Moses the term “stiffnecked people” is used several times as God looks on the nation and judges them for their rebellion. This judgement by God is a frightening comment on the people who are determined to do things “my way”.
God calls on people to come to Him and submit to His rule in their lives. Unless we accept the will of God in our lives we shall be left to our own resources. Such a place of being our own “boss” is highly dangerous and leads to nothing but ruin and chaos in the end.
We realise that in losing our lives (Matthew 10:39) we save them. This is the paradox of the Christian faith. People have the notion that if they give themselves over to the rule of the Creator they shall not be happy or content. Actually the very opposite is true. Those who lay everything at the feet of the Lord find that in the end they have peace, purpose, fulfillment and contentment that the world cannot offer.
Humanity was created to glorify and enjoy God. Any lifestyle that does not aim for that ideal falls far short of the mark. Through Jesus we are invited to join the family of God and experience the joy of being children of God. Isaac Watts (1674-1748) put it well when he wrote:
My dear almighty Lord, My Conqueror and my King,
Thy scepter and Thy sword, Thy reigning grace I sing:
Thine is the power; behold I sit In willing bonds beneath Thy feet.