Oh no. That sound. You know it can’t be good. The engine ‘putters’ louder and louder as you firmly grasp the stirring wheel. You try not to panic as the car vibrates abruptly. Little beads of perspiration begin to form on your forehead, as you think of the worst case scenario. “What is it this time? I just got my car inspected! How much this going to cost me? Well, I know for sure I don’t have the money for this! I don’t even have the time for this!”
All these thoughts pass through your mind in a matter of seconds. Quickly you pull over on to the side of the road. Your eyes start to race across the dashboard to find an answer to your frustration. “No check engine light!?” No smoke? Nothing!?
You take a deep breath and then….you see it. You think to yourself, “How could I have been so stupid!? All the problems in the world, and it had to be this one!” You plop your head down on the stirring wheel and stare at the gas gage. The little hand seems to taunt you as it dips all the way down to the “E.” Empty! Completely empty!
Let’s be honest, if you have ever had this happen to you it can be frustrating, and a little embarrassing. It gives you that gut feeling that almost makes you sick to your stomach. This is what it feels like to be empty.
I heard a preacher say something that I will hopefully never forget. He said, “The end of ourselves, is the begininning of God.” Feeling empty is not at all fun. In fact it’s rather frightening. But did you know that it is through being empty that we fulfill the work of God. It is when we empty ourselves, and deny all ungodliness and worldly lust, that we can live soberly, righteously and godly in this present world (Titus 2:12). When we allow ourselves to be brought to nothing, we can then see Him as everything!
How can a man bring himself to nothing? How can he truly empty the tank of self?
Well, being empty of one thing is as easy as being filled with another. This filling is the very resurrection power of the character and Spirit of God. Ephesians 5:18 says, “And be not drunk with wine wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;” When God comes in, all else must be ushered out. For no flesh will glory in His presence. We must allow the Holy Spirit to control every aspect of our lives, so that our fleshly appetites will not have dominion over us.
“…Walk in the Spirit and ye shall not fulfil the lusts of the flesh” (Galatians 5:16). When you are controlled by Him, you cannot fulfill the sinful desires of your heart.
So, how empty are you today? Or could I better ask, how full are you today? How full are you of His complete, and all-consuming Spirit?