It was when the choir in our Church sang a song called All that I am;
All that I am,
All I can be,
All that I have,
All that is me,
Accept and use Lord,
As You would choose Lord,
Right now today.
Take every Passion,
Take every skill,
Take all my dreams,
And bend them to your will,
My all I give Lord,
For You I live Lord,
Come what may.
Often I come with my problems and cares,
Running to you when distressed,
But I must give You the whole of my life,
Lord I must give You my best.
Life has no purpose unless it is yours,
Life without you has no goal,
All that fulfils me is doing your will,
Knowing that Your in control.
I don't know how many people outside of the Salvation Army will have heard this song, but it is one of my favourites and is possibly one of the most beautiful songs I have ever had the privilege of singing or listening to. There is a beautiful but tragic story behind the song which has caused there to be a haunting melody to this song which in my opinion makes it even more powerful as for me I feel that you can sense the presence of God within it. The composer wrote this song as his wife was dying of cancer as a way to help himself cope and try to make sense of what was happening in his life and the loss he was preparing for. I think it speaks volumes for the faith of William Himes that he was able to write such a powerful song about serving God in such a dark time.
There are two lines in particular which resonate deeply within me every time I sing or hear these words and I have highlighted them above. "But I must give You the whole of my life, Lord I must give you my best". The reason these words resonate with me and why they have helped in the disagreement with my Dad about the direction my life is taking is that I have a couple of options with what to do with my life.
On the one hand I could go out in to the world and continue in the career I have begun and become a wealthy and potentially a well known scientist. With this route comes security and a clear direction and progression into the future, I would be in control of my life and would be able to support my family so that they would have no worries in life any more.
The other is to follow a calling which is only getting stronger the more I think about and consider it. In following the direction I believe God is calling me would require turning away from 8 years of education, a significant financial investment and any control over where my life would lead. In this option I would go where I was sent, when I was sent and would earn only a tiny fraction of what I could following the other option.
However God keeps teaching me that money is not important and that when I need it the financial aspect of things will be taken care of. He keeps showing me time and again that if only I trust in Him he will make sure that I want for and need nothing. Also if I am to give God the whole of my life and my best then surely I must give Him them now.
My Dad's argument is not that I should not follow God's calling, but that I should go and work in science for a few years, earn and save a decent chunk of money and then follow God's calling. And while on the surface of it this sounds sensible, it is not following what God is saying, it is not giving my all and my best and it surely is not relying on God to provide all things as He has promised. It may be hard, it will surely be a challenge but I know that if I trust in Him I will make it through, if I trust on His goodness and Grace there will be nothing too big to get through. Hopefully through my actions and faith my Dad can learn that he does not need to do everything on His own and that trusting in God is a more viable option than relying on oneself.