When Christ makes His home within us, our response is a desire for Him to use us. I read a story* from China that has a great message about the magnificent stately Bamboo who longed to be used by the King. One day the King had a job that he knew the stately Bamboo could do well.
"I want to use you today," the King said, looking at Bamboo's magnificent head of waving plumes.
"How wonderful!" thought the proud Bamboo, "that is just what I have been waiting for."
"But to use you, I will have to cut you down," the King said.
"All right," conceded Bamboo, "so long as you use me."
"I must strip you of all your natural glory," the King confided to him.
Bamboo thought about it. To lose his head of fronds of which he was so inordinately proud seemed a big price to pay, yet...he really did long to be used by the King. "Yes, King, if that is the only way," he said at last, "so long as I am used."
"I must split you in two all down your length, and scour out your heart, breaking down all the partitions," the King whispered to him.
"O King, whatever the cost--yes, I must be used!" Bamboo eventually cried.
So he was cut down, all the fronds stripped away from him; he was split in two down his whole length and all his heart scoured out of him. Then, with nothing left of his original natural beauty, the two lengths were laid end to end, and water from the King's spring was fed down to the rice fields in the valley below.
Dear Lord, let us long to serve You out of love that allows Your Spirit freedom to flow through us.
"Whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all" (Mark 10:43-44).
Memory Verse for April
"He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all--how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things" (Romans 8:32).
Please pray for the Discipleship Summit that meets next week at an Amish Inn in Ohio. Pray that the Spirit's glorious presence will be felt in every session. Ask God to give His messages to each speaker.