for Him who hung upon the Cross for me. I have
thrown myself blind-folded and, I trust, without reserve into His almighty
Ahn, that heroic lady of Korea, had argued with God for some seven years
against going to the Japanese Diet and warning that nation against persecuting
the Christians for refusal to bow at the Shinto shrines. When she
finally yielded to obey God's call, she sold all her possessions and bought
a one-way ticket for Tokyo--to do and die. We say that consecration
is "for service or sacrifice." To Miss Ahn it was both. Hers would
be a trip to death. She bought a one-way ticket, to return nevermore--by
love compelled to obey, to go, to do, and, if necessary, to die.
Oh, to be so sweetly constrained by Calvary's awful compulsion that we
can hold out no longer, can no longer resist its attractive force!
We are drawn to death--with appetites whetted to eat of the Great Sacrifice.
Ah, this is life indeed, life more abundant, the life that is hid with
Christ in God--"He that eateth me, even he shall live by me."
there is another aspect that is all-important. Frances Ridley Havergal
has said: "Full consecration may in one sense be the act of a moment and
in another the work of a lifetime. It must be complete to be real,
and yet. if real it is always incomplete; a point of rest, and yet a perpetual
progression." Let us not be deceived, we shall often be compelled to say
with the Psalmist: "God is the Lord, which hath shewed us light (conversion):
bind the sacrifice with cords, even unto the horns of the altar
(consecration)." It will cost us all we have and all we am to keep
in this consecrated mind. We shall be forced to cry out again and
again as we fear the fire and feel the sacrificial knife, "Bind me, blessed
Savior, as a sacrifice--fasten me with Thy cords of constraining love lest
I finish my course with shame. Let me not begin to make provision
anywhere for the flesh--let my offering continue to be a burnt offering--a
whole burnt offering, yea, a continual burnt offering.
Let me never come down from the cross to save myself. Fix me, fasten
me, bind me with Thine own cords to Calvary, a continual burnt offering."
A missionary friend returned
to his field seeking a fresh anointing. He says: "The Lord searched
my heart and my possessions to see if anything had become dearer to me
than Himself. 'Lovest thou me more than these?'--meaning my wife
and boy. I hesitated. I felt as though He had laid before me
an execution warrant and was waiting for my signature. There was
a terrible fight in my heart: surrender meant death. After a long
struggle and by His grace, I made the surrender and I did it with the fullest
expectation that this meant the end of their earthly lives. After
a few weeks, while returning to our little Japanese house alone, the thought
flashed into my mind, 'The boy is sick." He was all right when I left home,
healthy and well. When I arrived home my wife came to welcome me,
and she said, "Gordon is sick." I said, "I knew it, it has come at last."
Then there came that agonized struggle, 'Lovest thou me more than the boy?'
But I had won the victory. So with a heavy heart I went up to the
lad to say goodbye. He lay on his bed, his little white face against the
pillow, desperately ill. There I realized that the only surrender
which truly counts is the surrender unto death. I was able to say
to God out of a full honesty of heart, "Thy will is best, and I would rather
have Thy will than anything on earth". What happened then? It happened
with me as with Abraham when he brought his son to the place of surrender
unto death on Mount Moriah. God gave him back his boy--and mine."
"Bind the sacrifice with
cords, even unto the horns of the altar."