Thursday, April 15, 2010

T4G Reflections: My Broken Prayer, All I Have is Christ

I forget who said it.  Honestly, I forget what they said.  All I remember is asking myself asking one question. What am I unwilling to lose?  Quickly rising up in my soul was the answer: my life.  Of course that means a ton of different things.  It means I have had a death grip on trying to attain a certain outcome for my life.  It means I have foolish, yet tight fisted, reign on what I am willing to do and not do in my walk with Christ.  I struggle with pride, self-righteousness, and just outright complacency. 

All of this was simmering in my heart for a day.  Wednesday evening during the first song Bob Kauflin said, “all I have is Christ” in one of his songs.  This jolted my heart.  I had trouble focusing on the next couple of songs because I let (rather was prodded to let) these words toss around in my soul.  Then he played this song:

That video was from a NA Conference not T4G.  But the lyrics are the same. 

Then John Piper preached essentially what this song meant.  You can watch the sermon if you like, but I will attempt to summarize.  Piper’s text was Luke 18.  He pointed out the self-righteousness of the Pharisee.  It was not that he was trusting in his own works and merits.  The Pharisee was trusting in a God wrought righteousness in his own life.  The problem, said Piper, is that he was not trusting on Christ—the tax collector was.  He brought out Philippians 3 and Paul essentially was the Pharisee and now he is the tax collector.  Piper further gave the example of the Rich Young Ruler—one thing he lacked: let go of money, let it fall to the poor, and cling to Christ.  The one thing he lacked was Christ.  In other words the song of the believer truly is All I Have is Christ.  Watch the Piper video if you want, but please do not neglect to read my closing comments:

T4G 2010 -- Session 6 -- John Piper from Together for the Gospel (T4G) on Vimeo.

God used this song and this sermon to renew a spark of the gospel in my heart.  During this time I found myself praying that the Lord would break me.  Break me of every vestige of self-righteousness that I may cling to Christ alone.  Break me of a foolishness that wants to cling to my life. 

If you follow this blog, or are my friend and read this, remind me in a couple of months when I’m “broken” about this prayer and where my brokenness stems from.  Lord make me a gospel man!


  1. Just don't forget that every experience, every ability that we have work together to make us who we are becoming.

    Where you are _today_ is a direct result of where you have come from and what you have come through. God is in control. Don't mistake strengths for weaknesses and vice versa.

    If your conscience convicts you of an area in your life, then give that up - if it is pride, then put yourself in situations where you have to let it go. They don't call it "practicing Christianity" for no reason ;)

    Sometimes, I think we see God as standing with His arms crossed and a frown on His face tapping His foot in impatience. I know I'm guilty of that too often.

    We don't take anything from, or add anything to God by our day to day actions. A sheep may frustrate a shepherd, but only to a point. The shepherd is not going to beat the sheep or let it go hungry or let the wolves get it (if He can help it - and I can only believe that He can indeed prevent it).

    Of course, it is infinitely more kind of the sheep to not go wandering off and causing difficulty for the Shepherd. :)

    God Bless you Mike. I enjoy your blog and our discussions :)


  2. Amen. BTW, I could use the reminder as well.

  3. Great summary of the Piper sermon. This conference similarly smashed my heart with the gospel, too. It actually has had a great deal of impact on me re-ordering our lives, and especially my marriage. Our prayer (my wife's and mine) has been for grace to live a life centered on, dependent upon, praising the, living the gospel of our crucified, buried, and risen Savior, Jesus.



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