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Monday, September 1, 2014

Take my life and let it be
consecrated, Lord, to thee;
take my moments and my days;
let them flow in ceaseless praise.

Take my hands and let them move
at the impulse of thy love;
take my feet and let them be
swift and beautiful for thee.

Frances Ridley Havergal’s “Take My Life” (tune: Hendon)
from Glory to God: The Presbyterian Hymnal

The word consecration literally means “association with the holy,” and this hymn beautifully illustrates what consecrating our life to God might look like. This is not a new idea, although it may be new to us. This hymn from Frances Ridley Havergal reflects a theme that we hear throughout the Bible but especially in 1 Corinthians.

We learn in 1 Corinthians that our bodies are to be temples of the Holy Spirit. “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? (1 Corinthians 6:19). Let’s think about that for a moment. Our body is a temple of the Holy Spirit?

That does seem to suggest that our bodies can be holy. How then are we to treat our bodies? How then are we to use our bodies? What words come out of our mouth? Are they worthy to come forth from a temple? What thoughts are in our heads? Are they appropriate for a temple?

Rather than scare or shame us, this call to consecrate our lives, to understand that God’s Spirit is within us, calls us to be transformed from the false images of the world to the image of God.

Don’t let this frighten you, but let it free you. You, yes you, are a temple of the Holy Spirit. Draw near to the Spirit, and as the hymn invites us, let your life flow in ceaseless praise.

Loving God, we praise you because, as the psalmist tells us, we are fearfully and wonderfully made. Let us recommit ourselves to understanding our lives as consecrated to you. This is uncomfortable because most of us don’t feel very holy, so mold us for your purposes and guide us to do your will. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Written by Liz Nickerson, Family Ministry Coordinator

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