I have seen three times in my studies where people in the Bible have said, "Into your hands I commit my spirit.” Two of these were when people were dying. The other came about when the writer was in peril. Upon thinking of these times, it is easy to think those are right times when you want God to take control. I wonder though, are there not other times we need God? Is there not a time in your life besides fear and pain when you want him? Yes, God does allow us to go through trials and God does not allow more testing than we can handle with Him, but what is the purpose of these times? Why does God allow them?
It seems God allows the testing to discipline us and to make us stronger. That, however, is not all. We must grow during these times, not just in our understanding of our limits, but also in our relationship with God. Moses had to endure 40 years in the wilderness before he was ready to lead the children of Israel from Egypt. Those who wanted to put him to death pursued David. The most important part of all this was the developing of a relationship.
For most of us, it takes a time of crisis and trial to draw closer to God. At every other time, we walk on our own and take very little heed of God in our lives. If, however, we come to realize the spiritual and physical worlds live side by side, then maybe we would find it easier to want to have a daily relationship with God. When we only call on Him in crisis, He is just a paramedic or a police officer. When we call on Him each day, He becomes a friend who talks and walks with us in each of our days. It would feel more normal to talk with and follow Him if we did this. I have come to see this stomping our foot in denial of wanting a relationship with Him, of needing a relationship with Him, as disobedience. Turning our back on Him and walking our own way is just that, disobedience. If a child did this to his or her parent, we call it disobedience. When we endeavor to work for God in our own strength and in our own way, we disrespect Him because our individuality shows through instead of our personal relationship with Him. We must be walking with Him to be working with Him.
Having a relationship with God is not a thing to do merely at death or times of trial. It is something to do through each day. Into your hands I commit my spirit. The spiritual world and the physical world reside in the same sphere. Should we not commit our spirit to God before our death and trials? Should we not commit ourselves to God's care and use during our lives? David said it during his life in Psalm 31:5. Jesus said it at the point His spirit left Him on the cross before His death (Luke 24:46). Stephen said it as he was stoned in Acts 7:59. Can we not say it now, in our place in life while living, and commit and give our spirit, our lives, to Him while He can still use them on this earth for His purpose and glory? Is not my spirit in fact the real me rather than my body? I say, Jesus, I commit my spirit to you, now. Come let us walk together through this life on earth and the one to come in your Kingdom.