Our verse for today comes from John 15:15, “No longer do I call you slaves, for the slave does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I have heard from My Father I have made known to you.”
When someone makes reference to a thing or a person being consumed by something, the image being expressed is most often not a good one. Homes and forests are consumed by fire, leaders are consumed with power, the insecure are consumed with jealousy and envy. Greed, lust, money and hate can consume an individual to where everything they are is tainted by their controlling passion. King David was consumed by his lust for Bathsheba, and then equally consumed by the need to cover up his subsequent dilemma. On a less spiritual level, each of us can develop blinders as we lose sight of certain things because of certain others. As my co- worker and I neared the end of a project, she became less and less able to focus on the task at hand as her mind constantly shifted to her nephew, who had to get a ride home from school with someone else and start his homework without her usual presence. My son went back to college Sunday after being home all week for Thanksgiving break, and even before church had ended, his attention was miles and miles away, such that a family picture after the service was like bamboo under his nails. My buddy had to take his baby girl to the hospital last night, and with her existing health problems and defects, there was understandably a great concern for her immediate future.
These instances are mere drops in the bucket for what so many people around us experience daily, not to mention what Jesus was about to go through at the hands of His executioners. But what amazing grace and humility and emptying of Himself He displayed as He comforted and encouraged and prepared His disciples with torture and death only a few hours away. Being consumed by God and the desire to serve and obey Him enabled Jesus to be consumed by everything except Himself. And that same nature is within us through the Holy Spirit. You, too, can be consumed by something other than yourself if you’ll make God’s highest your utmost.
As we seek Him today, ask God for a heart that beats in rhythm with His, consumed by everything that’s not about you.