Quote from Dr. Jeffrey A Klick's blog "Death to Self":
"What does it mean to take up our cross and follow Jesus daily? In the simplest terms, it means to lay down my will for His, and to esteem everyone else as more important than myself thus learning to walk in the footsteps of Jesus. I must begin in my home laying down my life for my family, becoming a servant to all and then work outward to everyone else I meet."
While it was my turn to lead hymn singing in our church's weekly prayer meeting yesterday, I was led to an old hymn which is a good portrait of dying to self. It's such a beautiful hymn that I really want to share. The original lyrics were in Chinese, written by brother Watchman Nee. Below is the English translation.
Olives that have known no pressure
Olives that have known no pressure, No oil can bestow;
If the grapes escape the winepress, Cheering wine can never flow;
Spikenard only through the crushing, Fragrance can diffuse.
Shall I then, Lord, shrink from suff'ring Which Thy love for me would choose?
Each blow I suffer Is true gain to me. In the place of what Thou takest Thou dost give Thyself to me.
Do my heart-strings need Thy stretching, Songs divine to prove?
Do I need for sweetest music Cruel treatment of Thy love?
Lord, I fear no deprivation If it draws to Thee;
I would yield in full surrender All Thy heart of love to see.
I'm ashamed, my Lord, for seeking Self to guard alway;
Though Thy love has done its stripping, Yet I've been compelled this way.
Lord, according to Thy pleasure Fully work on me;
Heeding not my human feelings, Only do what pleases Thee.
If Thy mind and mine should differ, Still pursue Thy way;
If Thy pleasure means my sorrow, Still my heart shall answer, "Yea!"
'Tis my deep desire to please Thee, Though I suffer loss;
E'en though Thy delight and glory Mean that I endure the cross.
Oh, I'll praise Thee, e'en if weeping Mingle with my song.
Thine increasing sweetness calls forth Grateful praises all day long.
Thou hast made Thyself more precious Than all else to me:
Thou increase and I decrease, Lord- This is now my only plea.