"Thou canst not every day give me thy heart,Yes, I rip quotes out of all context and take advantage of them in a most vulgar way a lot of the time. I am sorry.
If thou canst give it, then thou never gavest it" - John Donne, Lover's Infinitenesse
Regardless, this quote from John Donne (I used to think he was amazingly inspiring...now I think he's a little perverse and creepy), this quote I like. It's an accusatory line, directed at his lover. Every day she keeps giving him everything...or so she says. But what he recognises is that if she gave him everything, there'd be nothing left to give the next day.
It's a beautiful gesture, to give someone everything, all of you- but logically, it can only be done once. Otherwise, one of two conclusions can be obviously drawn. First, that the gesture was a lie, her words just words, that she professed to love him, said all of her was his...whilst in reality she kept herself for herself and never gave anything at all. Or, maybe, she gave herself to him, then reclaimed it, took it back ready to give again the next day. Either way, something's amiss, and he knows it.
The fact is that this is me. Christians have this cheesey exclusive terminology and way of wording things (let me learn again to pray prayers that include 'peng' and 'brap' please God). When someone asks for your 'testimony', you say, 'Well, when I was 14 I gave my life to Christ'. That was the turning point. I said that I belonged to Him and I was His, all His.
But, I've said it hundreds of times since. I'd like to say I say it every day, but I doubt it. How many times have I stood in church and sung, 'take my life, let it be, everything, all of me, here I am, use me for Your glory'...or 'Be my everything'...or 'I'll stand, my soul Lord to You surrendered, all I am is Yours'...the list is massive, they're all flooding through my head now (I quite like this). How many times have I resolved to change and cried out 'right! this time God just take me! I give up, I keep messing up when I go my way, I'm all Yours now...'?
Every time I give God my heart, it's a harsh light on the fact that I kept a little bit for myself last time I did it. That I never really gave it all. That I took some back. I give Him everything as often as I hold it back from Him.
Don't get me wrong, it's better, I think, to say you're His each day, every day. I don't think that my hypocrisy is a reason to stop trying. But, how amazing would it be to actually give Him everything? What would it look like?
Where are the naked prophets? Where are their harlot wives?
My prayer is that my prayers would be true. If I expect Him to honour them, maybe so should I...