Turf war: a colloquial term for a contention between two or more parties resulting in confrontation. It is a common problem in larger organizations when two divisions fight for access to resources or capital or over control of operations.
In a turf war against God, I’m going to lose. And yet, I must concede that I sometimes engage God in a battle “over control of operations”—I resist God taking control of certain aspects of my life.
I think many followers of Jesus are tempted to compartmentalize their faith. We think about God’s will when we’re praying, when we’re reading our Bible, and when we’re at church. We struggle, however, to think about God and His priorities when we’re at work, when we’re running errands, and when we’re watching television.
When the apostle Paul writes to the Colossians, he communicates to them in very specific ways how God wants access to every area of our life. Check out Colossians 3:18-4:1 and we see how our relationship with God impacts our marriage, how we parent, and how we get on in the work place.
The text has some cultural clothing on it, and so we have to be careful not to get distracted from Paul’s primary point: “Whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him” (Colossians 3:17).
By every appearance, following Jesus was never meant to be just a Sunday thing. Following Jesus is for every aspect of our life. This begs the question: Are there areas of your life where you might be consciously, or subconsciously, trying to shut God out?
If the answer is “Yes”, and if you are a follower of Jesus, you need to know that this is a turf war that you’re not going to win. But let’s not think of yielding to Christ as something that is negative. Submitting to Christ is not something we should begrudge or resist. Surrendering every aspect of our life to Christ will ultimately be liberating and, more importantly, it will be supremely honouring to God.
If you are interested in wading through this challenging, but massively practical, text I invite you to have a listen to the message below, “Everything For The Lord” — delivered at St. Giles Kingsway and The Well on February 28, 2010.